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Using Prescription and Over-the-Counter Medications During Pregnancy


an open bottle of prescription pills



Is it safe to take medication while you're pregnant? What about natural health products?

Some are safe but others may be harmful. So it's best to get advice from an expert.

Talk to your healthcare provider or pharmacist about the medications you're taking, or may want to take as your pregnancy progresses, such as over-the-counter pain relievers. You can also call HealthLink BC at 8-1-1 to speak with a pharmacist any time between 5 p.m. and 9 a.m.

Some medications, such as those for mood or seizure disorders, should not be stopped suddenly. Your healthcare provider can help you plan for any changes you may need to make.

Is it okay to take herbal supplements and vitamins?

Pregnant women should take a multivitamin with 0.4 mg (400 mcg) to 1 mg (1000 mcg) of folic acid. Folic acid is especially important prior to and in the first few weeks of pregnancy, because it prevents some birth defects.  You may also need extra iron. Talk to your doctor or midwife about which type of vitamin is best for you. And don’t take any kind of supplement without talking to your healthcare provider first. 

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Medicines During Pregnancy

Last Updated: August 13, 2013