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Nausea Medicine Over The Counter For Pregnancy

by Clara Wynn
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Nausea Medicine Over The Counter For Pregnancy

Nausea Medicine Over The Counter For Pregnancy

Nausea Medicine Over The Counter For Pregnancy: What’s that? You want to take a drug your doctor doesn’t know about? It’s called Diclegis. And this is the only FDA-approved medicine for treating nausea and vomiting during pregnancy. “The same effect is possible, and much cheaper,” says Dr. Elizabeth Linder, an OB/GYN in New York City who has no financial stake in Diclegis.

Diclegis is the brand name of the combo pill containing Vitamin B6 and the antihistamine dicyclomene. Diclegis was created by pharmaceutical company McNeil Consumer Products as a generic version of Zantac 75 (ranitidine hydrochloride) which treats heartburn. But its makers changed the formula slightly and added some other ingredients so it could be used to treat nausea and vomiting instead. In fact, there are several different brands of Diclegis on the market. Not all of them contain exactly the same combination of vitamins and medicines, but they all work pretty much the same way.

When you first start taking Diclegis, you might notice that the nausea subsides within 30 minutes or less. However, if the effects don’t last long enough, try doubling the dose. As with any medicine, consult your doctor before trying anything new.

How Does It Work? Exactly how Diclegis works will depend on what kind of pills you’re taking. Some people may need to take both versions of the meds, while others can skip the vitamin altogether. If you’re not sure whether you’ll benefit from taking Diclegis, ask your doctor or pharmacist.

So what happens when you pop a Diclegis? Well, here’s one theory: Your body sends signals to your stomach telling it that food is coming soon. When your brain gets these messages, your mind releases serotonin — a hormone that makes you feel good. Serotonin is also known as our happy chemical because it makes us relaxed and calm. So Diclegis suppresses the release of serotonin, making you nauseous.

However, there are other theories out there. One theory is that Diclegis blocks histamine receptors in the lining of your stomach. Histamines trigger inflammation, swelling and pain in your digestive system. When taken together, Diclegis decreases inflammation and discomfort caused by acid reflux and indigestion. Another theory suggests that Diclegis binds itself to acetylcholine receptors in the muscles around your esophagus. Acetylcholine causes smooth muscle spasms in the walls of your esophagus, causing pain and difficulty swallowing. By blocking those receptors, Diclegis relieves symptoms like chest pain, bloating and burping.

Some studies have suggested that Diclegis may help reduce morning sickness. A study published in 2009 found that women who took Diclegis experienced fewer nauseated days per week than women who didn’t use the product. Other research has shown that Diclegis helps improve energy levels, mood and overall well being.

But should pregnant women really be popping pills every day just to stay healthy? Read on to find out what side effects the experts say you should watch for.

Side Effects of Nausea Medicine Over The Counter During Pregnancy

Your morning sickness medications probably won’t cause any serious health problems. Most common side effects include dizziness, dry mouth, constipation and headache. There have been reports of severe allergic reactions to various types of nausea medications, including rashes, hives, asthma attacks and even fatal overdoses. Although rare, it’s best to check with your doctor before using any type of medication.

If you’re thinking about taking a nonprescription nausea remedy, remember that many herbal remedies — such as ginger root, peppermint oil and chamomile tea — aren’t regulated by the Food Drug Administration. That means they haven’t gone through clinical trials to test their safety or effectiveness. Also, since herbs affect the body differently, interactions with other supplements or prescription drugs may occur. Finally, because they’re unregulated, natural products may not carry warning labels indicating that they shouldn’t be combined with certain medical conditions, such as high blood pressure or diabetes.

On the next page, learn why you should consider talking to your doctor before giving up your favorite foods and beverages.

Pregnant women often turn to comfort foods for relief from morning sickness. These cravings usually involve salty, spicy or sweet flavors. Try eating bland crackers, pretzels, popcorn, toast, cereal or soup made without salt or spices. Avoid citrus fruits, alcohol and carbonated drinks like soda and beer. Instead, drink lots of water, juice or unsweetened teas.

Avoiding Foods With High Protein Content

During pregnancy, protein is essential for fetal development. But too much protein can make morning sickness worse. Meat, fish and poultry tend to produce more gas than carbohydrates, and consuming large amounts of protein can lead to bloating. To avoid excess protein, eat smaller portions and stick to lean proteins, such as turkey breast, chicken, tuna, low-fat dairy products and soybeans.

If you experience extreme morning sickness, see your physician immediately. He or she may prescribe sedatives and antiemetics. Sedative medications relax you and relieve nausea; antiemetic medications prevent nausea from occurring in the first place.

For more information on pregnancy and related topics, visit the next page.

Morning sickness affects 20 to 40 percent of pregnant women, although severity varies widely. Women who develop moderate to severe nausea and vomiting may need to take daily antiemetics, such as prochlorperazine maleate, metoclopramide or domperidone. Severe cases may require hospitalization.

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