It's important to be careful which pain relief medicines you take during pregnancy. Pain-relieving medicines that may be suitable while you're not pregnant may become unsuitable when you're expecting a baby. You shouldn't take any medicine during pregnancy without talking to your pharmacist, Doctor or midwife first.
Some medicines contain more than one ingredient so it's important to always read the label before taking any medicine. If you have questions about suitable pain relief, you can talk to your pharmacist.
If you have severe or persistent pain during pregnancy or if you're worried about a pain, you should call your midwife or Doctor immediately.
Paracetamol is generally considered suitable for use during pregnancy and while trying to conceive. As with all medicines, it's best to take the lowest dose needed, for the shortest time required.
If you accidentally take more than the recommended dose, you should go to your nearest Accident and Emergency department straight away.
As a precaution to safeguard both the mother and unborn baby, taking aspirin while pregnant isn't recommended unless it is prescribed by your doctor. If you're trying to become pregnant, it's best to avoid taking aspirin. Once pregnant, you should seek advice from your Doctor or pharmacist before taking aspirin. If you're taking aspirin and find out you're pregnant, you should contact your Doctor as soon as possible.
You should avoid taking ibuprofen in the first 30 weeks of pregnancy unless prescribed by your doctor. This includes medicines taken orally (tablets, capsules, meltlets and liquid suspensions) and those applied to the skin (gels and rubs). Taking ibuprofen in the first 30 weeks of pregnancy can lead to an increased risk of complications, including miscarriage.
From the 30th week of pregnancy onwards, you should only take ibuprofen on the advice of your Doctor. This is because ibuprofen has been associated with a reduced quantity of amniotic fluid and a risk of heart problems for your baby.
It's best to avoid taking ibuprofen when you're trying to become pregnant. If you're taking ibuprofen and find out you're pregnant, you should stop taking it immediately. Your Doctor, pharmacist or midwife will be able to help with any concerns you have.
Diclofenac is available from your pharmacist as a gel or medicated plaster that is applied directly to the skin. If you're in the first or second trimester of pregnancy (up to six months) you should talk to your Doctor or pharmacist before using diclofenac gel or medicated plaster. If you're in your third trimester (the last three months of pregnancy) you shouldn't use diclofenac gel or medicated plasters unless you're advised to by your Doctor.
If you're trying to become pregnant, it's best to avoid using diclofenac gel or medicated plasters. If you're using diclofenac gel or medicated plasters and find out you're pregnant, you should stop using it immediately. If you have any concerns, you can ask your Doctor, pharmacist or midwife.