Pregnant or not, nobody enjoys getting a cold. Coughing, sneezing, and that general “blah” feeling can make just about anyone eager to feel better. Still, being sick while pregnant may add additional concern for some expectant mothers. Here are some common questions along with the answers to put your mind at ease:
- Is there a way to prevent catching the common cold?
Since cold germs spread fairly easily from one person to another, the virus may be difficult to avoid. Also, your immune system may make you more susceptible to illness while you are pregnant. Some measures that can help with prevention include frequent hand washing and thorough cleaning of surfaces. Also, be sure not to share cups, utensils, or towels.
- If I catch a cold while pregnant, will it harm my baby?
Although you may a bit worse than usual when you are pregnant with a cold, it will not hurt your baby. That said, be sure to stay plenty hydrated and contact your doctor right away if you develop a fever.
- How can I make a cold go away more quickly?
There is an old expression that says, “The common cold will last a week if you treat it and seven days if you don’t.” While exactly how long the virus will stick around can vary, it really just has to run its own course. Meanwhile, there are things you can do to treat the symptoms.
- How can I safely treat a cold when I am pregnant?
Since some medicines such as decongestants can increase your blood pressure, it is a good idea to check with your doctor before taking medication. Try remedies such as using a humidifier and saline mist to keep your nasal passages moist. While it sounds simple, the best way to feel better is often by getting plenty of rest and drinking plenty of fluids.
- When should I call my doctor?
In general, a phone call to your health care provider is never a bad idea if you have concerns or questions. It is especially important if you have a fever of 102 degrees or greater, or if you are unable to eat or sleep. Also, watch for discolored mucus, wheezing, chest pain, or a persistent headache. All of these symptoms may indicate that you have something more than the common cold.
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