- Stages of Pregnancy Slideshow Pictures
- Slideshow of Early Pregnancy Symptoms
- Early Pregnancy Symptoms Quiz
- Patient Comments: Pregnancy and Drugs - Vitamins
- Is it safe to use medicine while I am pregnant?
- How should I decide whether to use a medicine while I am pregnant?
- Where do doctors and nurses find out about using medicines during pregnancy?
- How do prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) medicine labels help my doctor choose the right medicine for me when I am pregnant?
- What if I'm thinking about getting pregnant?
- Is it safe to use medicine while I am trying to become pregnant?
- What if I get sick and need to use medicine while I am pregnant?
- I have a health problem. Should I stop using my medicine while I am pregnant?
- Are vitamins safe for me while I am pregnant?
- Are herbal remedies or natural products safe for me when I am pregnant?
- In the future, will there be better ways to know if medicines are safe to use during pregnancy?
- For more information
Quick GuideStages of Pregnancy: See the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Trimesters of Mom & Baby
Are vitamins safe for me while I am pregnant?
Regular multivitamins and prenatal vitamins are safe to take during pregnancy and can be helpful. Women who are pregnant or trying to get pregnant should take a daily multivitamin or prenatal vitamin that contains at least 400 micrograms (µg) of folic acid. It is best to start taking these vitamins before you become pregnant or if you could become pregnant. Folic acid reduces the chance of a baby having a neural tube defect, like spina bifida, where the spine or brain does not form the right way. See our information on Folic Acid. Iron can help prevent a low blood count (anemia). It's important to take the vitamin dose prescribed by your doctor. Too many vitamins can harm your baby. For example, very high levels of vitamin A have been linked with severe birth defects.
Vaccines and Pregnancy
Vaccines protect your body against dangerous diseases. Some vaccines are not safe to receive during pregnancy. For some vaccines, the decision to give a vaccine during pregnancy depends on a pregnant woman's own situation. Her doctor may consider these questions before giving a vaccine:
- Is there is a high chance she will be exposed to the disease?
- Would the infection pose a risk to the mother or fetus?
- Is the vaccine unlikely to cause harm?
The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices recommends that Hepatitis B vaccination should be considered when women are at risk for developing Hepatitis B during pregnancy, and inactivated influenza vaccine should be considered for women who are pregnant during flu season. On the other hand, a pregnant woman who is not immune to rubella (German measles) is not given a rubella vaccine until after pregnancy. Talk with your doctor to make sure you are fully protected. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides vaccine guidelines for pregnant women.