Asthma and Pregnancy
Good control of asthma while pregnant is vital to ensure the health of both you and your baby. The goals of asthma care while pregnant are:
- To have the best asthma control you can.
- To prevent urgent care and emergency room visits.
- To decrease missed school or work days.
To help reach these goals, pregnant women should:
- Tell your doctor or nurse if you have asthma.
- Have routine visits with your asthma specialist.
- Keep taking asthma medicines as prescribed even if it includes daily medicines to control your asthma.
- Avoid things that may trigger your asthma such as: dust, mold, pets, pollen, paints, or perfumes
- Avoid tobacco smoke. If you are a smoker, please ask for help to quit smoking or call the Quit Line at 1-800-QUIT-NOW (784-8669).
- Call right away when asthma symptoms get worse.
If your asthma is not under control, your lungs are not getting enough oxygen to the baby. Not giving the baby oxygen is a far greater risk than taking asthma medicines. Most asthma medicines will not harm your baby.
- Well-controlled asthma while pregnant increases the chances of a healthy baby. Poorly controlled asthma may result in early and/or lower birth weight infants.
- Being pregnant may change your asthma. Symptoms improve in one third of women, stay the same in about one third of women and get worse in one third of women.
- Allergy shots may be given while pregnant but should not be started for the first time during pregnancy.
- Most women can do ‘Lamaze’ style breathing without concern during labor.
- Avoid any over-the-counter medicines without first talking with your asthma doctor or nurse.
- Breast-feeding is good for your baby’s immune system and is advised. Discuss any questions you may have about your medicines being transferred in the breast milk with your asthma doctor or nurse.
For more information about pregnancy and asthma, visit the following web site:
The information provided should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
Last Updated: 08/20/2012
Copyright © 01/07/2011 University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority. All rights reserved. Produced by the Department of Nursing. HF#5122
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