Generally, a pregnant woman should not take medications without the approval of OB/GYN or healthcare provider, as only your healthcare provider knows what kind of medicines are safe during a pregnancy..
You should keep in mind that these medications can be the reason for many birth complications and defects. You must ask your doctor to provide you a list of medications which can be safely taken during pregnancy.
Medications To Be Avoided
There are basically three types of medication: prescription drugs, over-counter medications and home remedies. Though, generally, home remedies are considered safe, but all are not safe for a pregnant woman, therefore along with prescription drugs and over-count medication, unapproved home remedies should also be avoided during pregnancy to prevent any risk can occur during pregnancy.
It is safe to use topical and low-dose medication like sore throat spry and anti-itch cream than the medications which are taken internally. But it is better to ask to your doctor about using any kind of product, including itchy cream and sore throat spray.
Some drugs like ACE inhibitor and migraine medications affect the blood pressure of a pregnant woman and are considered potentially harmful during pregnancy, while risk of taking other drugs is still not clear.
Identification Of Medications To be Avoided
Most of the prescription drugs and over-the-counter drugs have warning labels and sometimes there is an information pamphlet inside box. The Food and Drugs Administration authority (FDA) labels these drugs into five different classes: A, B, C, D and X.
Class “A” drugs are proven to be safe for using during pregnancy. Class “B” drugs are not considered safe for a pregnant woman but safe for animals. Class “C” drugs are unsafe for both humans and animals.
Class D drugs are considered risky and they may cause some birth defect but in some cases their benefits outweigh the risks. Class “X” drugs is considered completely harmful for pregnant women and the the fetus, therefore these should be totally avoided during pregnancy.
Time Frame For These Medications
Sometimes the harm caused by medication depends upon the time frame, as some medications need to be strongly avoided during first trimester while others should be avoided during the last few weeks of pregnancy. The FDA assigns these drugs on two classifications such as classification in early pregnancy and classification in late pregnancy.
Some medications such as accutane (acne drug) and Thalidomide are strongly avoided during early pregnancy; they may cause high risks of birth defects in your baby.
Soriatance or acitretin (a psoriasis drug) can also cause sever birth defects and the side effects can surface even three years after you took the medicine. Some common medications such as aspirin may cause risk of excessive bleeding if taken near the time of delivery.
Effects Of These Medications
These medications can be really harmful for you during pregnancy and especially for the fetus. Thalidomide is considered to cause sever birth defects such as heart problems and digestive disorders and also missing limbs, some other drugs such as ibuprofen and naproxen (Aleve) also cause heart defects in the unborn baby so they are completely forbidden especially during late pregnancy, instead they are considered safe in early pregnancy if taken occasionally in low dosages.
While the effects of other medications are not too clear, such as anti-depressants, they may not be the reason for birth defects but doctors are still doubtful about them.
Sometimes, the effect of medication on a pregnant woman and her baby is not clear, since the doctor is not sure about usage of such medication during pregnancy. So, to be on the safe side, these medications should be completely avoided to stop any harm happening to your health or that of the baby’s.