You know that during pregnancy, your baby will be taking everything she needs from your body. So you’re prepared to eat nutritious foods and avoid toxins wherever possible. You may have already given up indulging in caffeine, alcohol, some medications and whatever else you think might hurt either your chances at pregnancy or the healthiest baby possible.
But what about depression medication?
It’s a tough choice for many women. Plenty of research has tried to answer the question: If you’ve been prescribed pharmaceutical treatments for depression, should you stop altogether when you’re trying to get pregnant? What about if you’re already pregnant? There’s now no question that risks exist during pregnancy. The big quandary for physicians and their patients is how to weigh those risks for both mom and baby. And do those risks continue after birth, during lactation?
What kind of risks are we talking about here?
Some studies have noted increased risk for miscarriage. The risks for babies include cardiovascular malformations and neonatal pulmonary hypertension. The biggest risk for mom, of course, is relapse into severe bouts of depression.
Bear in mind that it’s normal during pregnancy to experience hormonal fluctuations that cause sudden or unusual mood changes. But for women who have experienced severe clinical depression, bouncing back from a mood swing may simply be impossible without proper treatment.
In future blog posts, we’ll look at studies that try to narrow the risk gap and help resolve the questions. We’ll also talk to practitioners who can comment on whether or not alternative depression treatments can be both effective and safe during pre-conception, pregnancy, and postpartum nursing.
About Tracy Morris
I wear a lot of hats while spinning plates and true stories. In between taking care of myself and my family, I write about fertility and other health care topics. Most of my online time lately is spent at two very different places: FertilityTies.com and TrailerParkKarma.com. Perspective is everything -- my pre-teen reminds me daily.Web | Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn | More Posts (29)