Can you take Claritin while pregnant? We investigate how to deal with troublesome allergies while keeping your baby safe and well.
Are you suffering from itchy eyes because the pollen count is sky-high?
Sneezing because your neighbor’s cat made a nest on your bed?
If you’re pregnant, you might be wondering if you have to just live with your allergies — or can you take Claritin while pregnant? Let’s dive in.
We’re going to look at what Claritin is and how it works.
And we’ll explore how to manage your allergies while keeping your little peanut healthy.
In this article: 📝
- What is Claritin?
- Can you take Claritin while pregnant?
- Does Claritin cause birth defects?
- What allergy medicine can I take when pregnant?
- Can pregnant women take Claritin? The bottom line
What is Claritin?
Claritin is a brand name for an antihistamine medication called loratadine.
So what exactly is an antihistamine?
The “anti” here is a clue — loratadine, and drugs like it, go into battle against things called histamines.
Histamines are like nightclub bouncers for your body.
As soon as they spot an allergen, they leap into action to get rid of it.
And they’ll try anything to succeed.
They’ll make you sneeze to get rid of allergens in your nose.
They’ll make you itch so you’ll rub them off your skin.
And they’ll make your eyes water so your tears will wash them away.
But while your histamines are trying to help out, all this can be very annoying.
Antihistamines like Claritin work by giving those nightclub bouncers the night off.
That means a break from the sneezing, itching, and runny eyes.
Can you take Claritin while pregnant?
So is Claritin safe during pregnancy?
Everything we know about Claritin — and other antihistamines that use loratadine — is that it’s fine to use while pregnant.
So you don’t have to put up with the sniffles while you’re expecting!
But the golden rule here is the same as for most health-related questions while you’re pregnant.
If you’re worried, check with your doctor.
All pregnancies are different, and it’s absolutely fine to ask any questions that are on your mind.
The FDA provides general information on taking medication while pregnant.
The basic advice is to:
- Talk to your healthcare provider if you have any questions.
- Read the advice leaflet that comes with any medication before you take it.
- Speak to your doctor straight away if you experience any side effects after you’ve taken it.
Does Claritin cause birth defects?
Loratadine has been the subject of several medical studies, and all but one found it had no adverse effects on pregnancy.
The exception was a study suggesting it might be linked to something called hypospadias in boys, which is a condition where the opening of the penis is on the underside, rather than the tip.
But every other study that’s looked at this topic has found no significant link at all.
And the researcher who thought they’d found a connection later questioned their results.
They published a paper noting that the link might have resulted from flaws in the study design.
What allergy medicine can I take when pregnant?
The advice about Claritin and pregnancy also applies to many other antihistamines.
Some antihistamines have been researched more extensively than others.
But the types used to control allergies are generally better understood.
Different products use different active ingredients.
Another market-leading antihistamine, Benadryl, for example, uses something called diphenhydramine.
Loratadine, used in Claritin, is one of those that’s been studied most.
And the antihistamines in Benadryl, Dramamine, and Zyrtec have also been well researched, with reassuring results.
All the evidence suggests they’re fine to use while you’re expecting.
And it doesn’t appear to make any difference how far into your pregnancy you are.
So can you take Claritin while pregnant in the first trimester? The answer is yes, provided you check with your doctor.
Can pregnant women take Claritin? The bottom line
Somewhere between 10 and 15% of pregnant women take antihistamines like Claritin.
Loratadine, Claritin’s key ingredient, has been the subject of plenty of studies, and the results are reassuring.
But if you have any worries, discuss them with your doctor.
They’ll be able to offer advice based on your individual circumstances.
We hope you’re soon saying goodbye to your allergy blues!
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