Tylenol While Pregnant
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|Is Tylenol Safe During Pregnancy?
Tylenol is a brand name for the drug acetaminophen, commonly used for the treatment of colds and flu. Tylenol tablets and gel caplets have not been formally assigned to a pregnancy category by the FDA. However, it is routinely used for short term relief of pain and/or fever during pregnancy at all stages. It is believed to be safe for treating flu during pregnancy when used intermittently for short periods.
Tylenol should only be given during pregnancy when need has been clearly established. Tylenol Regular Strength tablets are available over the counter at pharmacies and can help alleviate headaches, pains and sore throats. Maximum adult dosage is up to 2 tablets or 650 mg every four hours. However, pay close attention to the ingredients on other Tylenol branded medications, as these may contain ingredients other than just acetaminophen. For example, aspirin (which should be avoided) is sometimes called salicylate or acetylsalicylic acid. Other OTC Tylenol medications include:
• Tylenol Cold and Cough Daytime
All medications receive a FDA pregnancy category safety rating from A to D, X and N (see below). A is considered the safest but is usually only reserved for ingredients in prenatal vitamins. B is the next layer which means the product has been tested to some degree in pregnancy and no evidence of birth defects have been reported. Tylenol, although not yet assigned, is considered a risk B drug. Aspirin on the other hand is a considered a risk D category drug. Before taking any medication while pregnant always discuss options with your doctor first.
The FDA system of categorizing drugs is not always reliable. For example, there is a natural tendency to assume that a category B drug is less harmful than a category C drug. However, a category B drug need only be tested adequately on animals, not on humans. Due to the ethical considerations, many drugs in reality probably cannot be researched in pregnancy on humans. That said, despite its shortcomings, the FDA system is still useful as a fast ‘first screen’ on the potential risks of drugs to pregnant women and their fetuses.
Don't worry if you are still a little confused, most scientists are too! Looking after your health in pregnancy is important so check out the prenatal care guide.
For more about mommy care, see the following:
• Birthing Centers - The comforts of home and a midwife on call.
Return to Homepage: Womens Health Advice