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Disclaimer: The information in this post is for educational purposes only. I am not a doctor. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. None of the opinions are meant to diagnose or treat any disease or illness. You should always consult your healthcare provider.

Colds: Sudafed, Mucinex and Breastfeeding

Winter. It’s that time of year when sickness seems never-ending. The common cold often makes its way around from family to family. Many say that there should be a law against mothers getting sick, but unfortunately, sickness happens. Usually harmless, the common cold is more of a nuisance than anything. Breastfeeding mothers may wonder, “Can I take medications to help ease the severity of my symptoms? Are Mucinex and breastfeeding compatible? What about Sudafed?”

Are cold medicines like Mucinex and breastfeeding compatible?

Colds: Sudafed, Mucinex and Breastfeeding

Taking over-the-counter medications will not cure your cold, but it will help relieve the symptoms. Two common medications include:

  1. Mucinex (the trade name for guaifenesin) helps thin and loosen mucus so you can cough it out. Dextromethorphan (a cough suppressant) is often found in combination with guaifenesin, and both of these are safe to take while breastfeeding. (In addition to Mucinex, guaifenesin is also the active ingredient found in Robitussin.)
  2. Sudafed (trade name for pseudoephedrine) is a decongestant. This medication is also safe to take while breastfeeding, but in some women it can cause a reduction in breast milk supply. If you already suffer from low supply issues, use cautiously and if your supply drops, stop taking it. It can also cause irritability in some babies.

A few tips when looking at medications:

  • Always look at the active ingredients on medications. Often cold medications have more than one active ingredient listed and if you decide to take more than one medication, you may accidentally take more than you should.
  • Treat the symptoms you have. I avoid taking medications that treat a combination of symptoms unless I actually have all of those symptoms. (Reading the active ingredients will tell you the symptoms that the medication treats.)
  • If you are unsure if a medication is safe to take while you are breastfeeding, call your doctor or a lactation consultant.

The most important things you can do:

  1. Get plenty of rest. If you are able to, sleep when your baby is sleeping. If you have a family member nearby who is willing and able to help, see if they can help you out for an hour or two.
  2. Stay hydrated by drinking lots of water, bone broth, and green tea with the following added to it: honey, lemon juice, and apple cider vinegar.
  3. Use a humidifier. This will make the air slightly more humid, which will make it easier for you to breathe.

Source here and here

Sarah is a Christian, wife, and mother of two. She is a nurse by training but has stayed at home with her daughter for almost 4 years. During Sarah’s free time, you can find her knitting, sewing, and blogging over at her personal blog over: Wife, Mummy, Nurse.

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