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Antihistamines When Breastfeeding: Dealing With Allergies

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If you’re breastfeeding, any medication you take may pass through your breastmilk to your baby. As a result, you might be reluctant to take any medication for as long as you’re nursing. But if you suffer from serious allergies, can you still take antihistamines?

In this post we’ll explore the official advice on taking antihistamines while you’re breastfeeding, from both the NHS and from pharmaceutical manufacturers. We’ll also discuss some ways you can manage hayfever and other allergies while you’re breastfeeding if you want to avoid taking medication.

Antihistamines When Breastfeeding – What Does the NHS Say?

The NHS says that, though you can pass on medicines to your baby while breastfeeding, you’ll generally only pass on a very small amount. Because of this, they advise that “very few medicines are unsafe while you’re breastfeeding.”

However, the NHS does list antihistamines as one of the few medicines you should be wary of taking while breastfeeding. They recommend talking to your doctor, midwife, or pharmacist before you take any medicines for allergies or allergy-related conditions.

What Do Antihistamines Manufacturers Say About Breastfeeding?

Many over the counter allergy treatments may specifically say they’re not suitable to take while you’re nursing. This does not necessarily mean that the medicine’s going to harm your baby if you take it. It may simply mean that the manufacturer has not tested how their medicine might affect breastmilk, so they cannot recommend you take it while breastfeeding.

The Breastfeeding Network has some useful resources on how you should consider patient information leaflets while you’re breastfeeding.

How To Manage Hayfever Symptoms When You’re Breastfeeding

If you suffer from serious hayfever symptoms or other allergies, talk to your doctor. They’ll discuss the risks of taking antihistamines with you, and if they think it’s safe for you and your baby, they’ll be able to advise on a suitable course of treatment.

Also talk to your doctor about nasal decongestants. Usually, these are used locally as a spray, which means there’s no risk that they’ll affect your breastmilk. But once again, the NHS recommends it’s best to talk to your GP first, to be sure.

Alternative Treatments for Hay Fever while Breastfeeding

If you want to completely avoid taking any medicines while you’re breastfeeding – or if your doctor or pharmacist has advised against it – there are other ways to manage your symptoms:

  • Rub Vaseline around your nostrils to trap pollen.
  • Wear wraparound sunglasses to keep pollen out of your eyes.
  • Wash your clothes and bedsheets regularly, but don’t dry them outside.
  • Check the pollen count every day and stay indoors with your windows closed on days with high counts.

You could also get a Home Air Purifier. Our purifiers can completely cycle the air in a large room 4.8 times an hour, filtering out up to 99% of particles such as pollen, dust, mould, and pet dander. This will help you breathe better and sleep better during hayfever season, while giving you an effective way of managing your allergies while you’re breastfeeding.

Learn more about how our home air purifiers can help you manage allergy symptoms while you’re nursing.

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