When Pesky Allergies from Pollens or Pet Dander Cause Problems
Disclaimer: This page houses important information and resources pertaining to allergies during pregnancy and while breastfeeding, including links to our evidence-based Fact Sheets. However, the resources here should not replace the care and advice of a medical professional.
Ah, spring, summer, and fall – beautiful seasons to be enjoyed in much of the world, but they can also be miserable if you are an allergy sufferer! Unfortunately, pollens, mold spores, and even the dander from our family fur babies can bring on pesky symptoms like sneezing, runny nose, and red, itchy eyes. Luckily, there are a plethora of prescription and over-the-counter medication options to treat allergy symptoms. But what should you do if you are pregnant or breastfeeding?
“An allergist/immunologist can tell you which asthma and allergy medications are the safest and most effective to take throughout pregnancy. Make an appointment with an allergist soon after you discover you are pregnant to develop or review your personal treatment plan and to give you peace of mind.”— American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology.
There are non-medication options that may alleviate allergy suffering, such as avoiding the outdoors during certain times of day, wearing a face mask to prevent inhaling allergens, using high quality air filters in your home, rinsing your sinuses with a saline nose spray, or washing Fido on a weekly basis to reduce allergy-causing dander. But when your symptoms don’t respond to these efforts, talk to your healthcare provider about the best treatment options and check out our resources if you’re looking for information about a specific active ingredient.
Last, people with asthma need to be particularly careful as the same allergens that cause allergy symptoms may also cause asthma symptoms – and uncontrolled asthma has been linked with poorer pregnancy outcomes, like preterm birth (delivery before you reach 37 weeks), pregnancy loss, and low birth weight. See our Asthma page for more information and resources.
Reference: Gilbert et al. Drug Saf. 2005;28(8):707-19.
Please see our library of resources below on allergies during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
Related Fact Sheets
Related Baby Blogs
- American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology: Asthma, Allergies, and Pregnancy
- American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology: Asthma and Pregnancy
- American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology: Caring for Pregnant Patients with Asthma During the Covid-19 Pandemic
- American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology: Pregnancy and Allergies
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Key Findings: Antihistamines and Birth Defects
- Allergy and Asthma Network
- American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology
- Patient Education Genius
- Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine
- Society for Birth Defects Research & Prevention