There are countless aches and pains associated with pregnancy. You’ll experience back pain, headaches, pain from swelling, general joint pain, and more. While these aches are a natural part of the physiological changes your body is going through, they are unpleasant and add extra stress to your daily life. There are some natural methods of pain relief during pregnancy, such as Yoga and acupuncture, but these are not necessarily feasible options when you are sitting at your office or our to dinner with your family. Pain relievers are an easy option outside of pregnancy, but most of us shy away at the thought of any type of medication during the fetal development of our child. While some painkillers are unsafe during pregnancy, some are perfectly fine, so it is important to know which is which. Studies show that acetaminophen is safe to take for the duration of gestation. As long as the recommended amount is not exceeded, pregnant women can take this, most commonly sold as Tylenol, without interrupting their child’s development. While Tylenol is the most popular brand name of acetaminophen, you can buy different brands as long as you are sure acetaminophen is the only active ingredient. However, some other over the counter medications are not safe for pain relief during pregnancy. Ibuprofen should be avoided during pregnancy. Motrin and Advil are the most common brands of ibuprofen, and their use during pregnancy has been associated with numerous birth defects, including low birth weight, high blood pressure and even miscarriage. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs should also be avoided. These include aspirin and naproxen, and have also been associated with birth defects. When you’re pregnant, pain is inevitable. Even the stress of pregnancy alone is enough to send any woman to her bed with a splitting migraine. Aside from the stress, pregnancy takes a toll on your body, and the added weight can cause serious aches. While roughing it without meds is admirable, it will make for a very unpleasant experience, and pregnancy should be a happy time. If you’re struggling with pain at any point during your pregnancy, be careful about what type of painkiller you reach for. You should always consult your healthcare provider before adding any type of medication to your personal regimen, but acetaminophen, even the extra-strength variety, will provide fast, safe and effective pain relief during your pregnancy. Source: Cristina Rebordosa et al: Use of Acetaminophen During Pregnancy and Risk of Averse Pregnancy Outcome. International Journal of Epidemiology Volume 38 Issue 3 pp. 706-714 March 2009

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