Congratulations! Becoming a mother is one of the most exciting times in a woman’s life. Pregnancy can be a joyous time. But it also can be a time of uncertainty and worry. Getting informed is the first step in keeping yourself and your baby healthy.
Be sure to tell Dr. Meyers that you are pregnant—so this can be considered in treatment decisions. If you have concerns or questions about taking antibiotics or any kind of medications during pregnancy, discuss them with Dr. Meyers and your obstetrician.
When deciding whether or not to have oral surgery during pregnancy, you, your obstetrician and Dr. Meyers need to talk about the benefits and risks. There may be times during pregnancy when having oral surgery is a choice. Other times, it is not a choice—it is a necessity.
Putting off treatment that you need could harm you and your baby. For example, a jaw fracture or an infected tooth that is not treated may become a more serious infection spreading throughout your body. Such infections can cause preterm labor and low birth weight.
An antibiotic may be all that is needed to improve your condition—at least until you can have definitive surgery after your baby is delivered. Some antibiotics are generally considered safe to take throughout pregnancy. These include penicillin, cephalosporins and erythromycin. Other antibiotics—such as streptomycin, quinolones and tetracycline—pose known risks to a developing fetus and should be avoided. In all cases, the potential risk of a drug needs to be carefully weighed against the potential harmful effects of the condition if left untreated. If an antibiotic is the only way to cure your illness, Dr. Meyers in consultation with your obstetrician will prescribe the safest drug possible at the safest dosage possible.
If Dr. Meyers determines that oral surgery should not be delayed, he will review his treatment plan with your obstetrician to better ensure you and your baby receive the safest possible care.
Are you wondering whether you should start or continue breastfeeding because you are on medication, have an infection, are undergoing x-rays or need oral surgery? The fact is that for the vast majority of these situations you can and should continue to breastfeed your baby.
Treatment of very few maternal illnesses requires the mother to stop breastfeeding. This is particularly true of a jaw fracture or an infected tooth. Most drugs may be considered safe for the mother to take and continue breastfeeding if:
- They are commonly prescribed for infants. Examples are amoxycillin, cloxacillin, and most antibiotics.
- They are considered safe in pregnancy. As during pregnancy, the mother’s liver and kidneys will get rid of the drug for the baby.
- They are not absorbed from the stomach or intestines. These include many drugs which are given by injection. Examples are lidocaine or other local anesthetics.
- Many frequently used drugs are also generally safe during breastfeeding: Acetaminophen (Tylenol, Tempra), aspirin (in usual doses, for short periods), tetracycline, codeine, most nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications, prednisone, thyroxine.
- Medications applied to the skin, inhaled or applied to the eyes or nose are almost always safe for breastfeeding.
- General, regional or local anesthesia should not affect breastfeeding. Medications you might take afterwards for pain are almost always permitted. You can still breastfeed as soon as you are up to it.
Neither ordinary X-rays, CT scans nor MRI scans require a mother to stop breastfeeding.
In any case, be sure to tell Dr Meyers that you are lactating—so this can be considered in treatment decisions. If you have concerns or questions about taking antibiotics or any kind of medications, discuss them with Dr. Meyers and your pediatrician. Dr. Meyers will review his treatment plan with you and your pediatrician to better ensure you and your baby receive the safest possible care.