Pepto Bismol During Pregnancy

Submitted by Pregnancy and Baby Care team on May 29, 2012
Pepto bismol is commonly used across the North American continent to treat minor problems related to the stomach. It contains an ingredient known as Bismuth subsalicylate, which is an antacid and an anti-diarrhea medication, normally used for treating problems like indigestion, nausea, diarrhea, reflux and an upset stomach. Bismuth forms a protective cover over the ulcers in a person's stomach and gut and protects them from the acids in the stomach, enabling them to heal faster. It also gets rid of the bacteria that aggravate ulcers.

Is Pepto Bismol Safe for Pregnant Women

Most pregnant women generally suffer from stomach-related problems. Morning sickness, which is nausea induced mainly by pregnancy, is one of the most common symptoms of pregnancy. Contrary to its name, it does not occur only in the morning; it can bother a pregnant woman at any time of the day. Some women suffer from this ailment in the early stages of pregnancy, while others can be affected by it, till the third trimester. Apart from morning sickness, it is also quite common for women to suffer from indigestion, heartburn, reflux and other digestive problems during the course of their pregnancy. In order to gain relief from these discomforts, many pregnant women may be tempted to take pepto bismol during pregnancy. However, a number of them do not always check if it is safe for them to do so.

The FDA labels all medications and drugs in the US, with the letters A, B, C, D & X. Drugs which are classified as "Class A" drugs are believed to pose no threat to an expectant mother or her baby, while "Class B" drugs are usually safe; "Class C" drugs are mostly safe but should be taken after consulting a healthcare provider and "Class D" drugs could have some risks, but may be essential, in some situations. "Class X" drugs are believed to pose higher risks to the fetus as well as the mother. Pepto Bismol has been considered as a "Class C" drug, which means that it should not be taken before consulting a doctor. There are some medicines that can be used to cure digestive problems, which are quite safe and therefore the doctor may be able to recommend an alternative to pepto bismol.

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