You’re pregnant. You’re not feeling well. It’s a tough time in every woman’s life. Some women – the very lucky ones – feel amazing when they’re pregnant. These women have a glow to them that is undeniable, and they never have any real pregnancy-related complaints.
Other women turn to supplements and medicine to help them get through their pregnancy.
Vicks VapoRub during pregnancy is often a go-to product for pregnant women.
But is Vicks safe during pregnancy?
That’s what we’re going to explore today – if Vicks is really safe for a pregnant woman to use.
Table of Contents
Vicks Offers Several Products
What most moms-to-be don’t realize is that Vicks offers several products. You may be thinking of the VapoRub, or you may be thinking about cold medicine, an inhaler or Sinex, which is the company’s decongestant product.
We’re primarily going to focus on Vicks VapoRub, but it’s important to know that some products are safe and others are not.
I want to give you a brief overview of a few ingredients that you want to look for that should be avoided during pregnancy. You can look for these ingredients in any supplement, medication or rub that you plan on using.
Ephedrine. This is an ingredient that should be avoided.
Phenylephrine hydrochloride. A main ingredient in a lot of medicines, this ingredient should be avoided because it can actually reduce the user’s blood flow. Babies and mothers-to-be do not want to have blood flow reduced. The blood transports oxygen and nutrients to the baby, so it’s definitely not something that you would want altered.
These are the two main ingredients to watch out for because they can have drastic side effects during pregnancy.
Vicks Products That Are Safe
Again, we encourage you to ask your doctor if it’s safe to take any of these products first. There’s also a label on the back of every container or bottle that should mention a warning for pregnancy if the product shouldn’t be used during pregnancy.
The Vicks products that are safe are:
- VapoRub. Since VapoRub is rubbed into the chest or put under the nose, it’s generally safe. This product works to relieve the symptoms of congestion, including coughs, sore throats and blocked nose.
- Inhaler. This small inhaler contains menthol, pine needle oil and camphor, which also works to combat a stuffy nose.
- First Defence. A nasal spray that is considered generally safe. This microgel traps cold virus particles and stops them from entering your system.
These three products are generally safe, but if you still have concerns when using them, you’ll want to contact your doctor.
Sinex Decongestant capsules are not safe because they contain a large dose of phenylephrine hydrochloride. You’ll want to make sure that you avoid this product if you’re pregnant. There are other alternatives available.
There are two additional Vicks products that require your doctor’s advice before using:
- Cold & Flu Care
- Sinex nasal spray
If you can find an alternative that is safe for pregnant women, it’s best to use the alternative rather than take the risk with a potentially unsafe product.
Why Women Use Vicks VapoRub During Pregnancy
Vicks VapoRub pregnancy tips almost always mention the high frequency of colds when a woman is pregnant. Vicks VapoRub is often placed on the chest or under the nose to help alleviate the issue with colds.
What happens is that the woman’s immune system changes when she’s pregnant. These changes make the woman more susceptible to catching a cold or cough. Illnesses may also last longer, causing mom to have trouble sleeping, too.
Colds can lead to:
It’s important that a woman treat her cold immediately to speed up the healing process.
A few tips that can help a woman avoid the cold or cough that comes with pregnancy are:
- Diet. A healthy diet that is comprised of fruits and vegetables is a good start. Vitamin C can definitely come in handy, so this means either taking it in supplement form or getting it naturally through your foods. Vitamin C has been shown to boost the body’s immune system, so it’s a great way to stave off any form of illness when pregnant.
- Exercise. There is always a lot of debate on exercising when pregnant, but it’s turning out that exercise is very good at helping to reduce the risk of illness and cold. Exercising regularly keeps the body healthy and strong while also providing mom with more energy.
- Sleep. A good night’s sleep is always what the doctor recommends. If you want to fight off a cold or reduce fatigue, you need to sleep more. This is why so many women will place Vicks under their noses or on their chests before going to bed. The rub will open up the nasal passages and allow you to breathe with greater ease.
- Vitamins. Prenatal vitamins work to keep the baby healthy and strong while also boosting mom’s immune system. Ask your doctor which vitamins to take or supplements that will be more beneficial during pregnancy.
- Probiotics. The addition of probiotics is a very sound choice. Why? Probiotics help to restore the good bacteria in your gut and boost your immune system. A good idea for any pregnant woman is to eat yogurt with probiotics to keep her gut healthy and strong.
You’ll also find that washing your hands often or using an antibacterial cleaner when going out or touching items helps a lot. It may seem extreme, but this measure can keep colds and flus away when your body is already struggling to stay healthy.
Tips for Using Vicks VapoRub During Pregnancy
If you plan on using Vicks, it’s always best to put it on as needed. A lot of women will use it as a precaution and put it on before bed at night. You can reapply it during the day to help alleviate any symptoms that you may be suffering from.
A few tips that may help you get the most out of Vicks are:
- Infant / Baby Vicks. There is Vicks that is formulated for infants and babies. Delicate, this ointment may reduce many of the fears you’re having since it’s much less strong than the normal Vicks you find in stores.
- Wall Plug. There’s a wall plug version that a lot of mothers mention. This version plugs into the wall, allowing you to inhale the vapor throughout the night. Make sure to close the door to trap the vapor so that you can optimize the benefits of the vapors.
- Vicks Under the Nose. When rubbing the ointment on your chest isn’t working out, you can put a dab right under your nose. This puts the vapors close to the nose, allowing you to inhale a much stronger dose as a result.
- Nostrils. Some women will use a cotton swab and dab a bit of Vicks into each nostril. This works to really open up those clogged nasal passageways. This has been said to help with congestion in the morning.
- Lavender Oil Trick. A great tip from one mom is to go the extra mile and add a few drops of lavender oil into the ointment. The goal is to help mom sleep better at night, and lavender does just that. Since lavender is a natural relaxant, it’s perfectly safe to use, smells really good and will offer you a better night of sleep, too.
- Back of Ears. Apply a dab of Vicks behind the ears for added comfort and potency. The additional Vicks will help to keep the nasal passageways open and reduce any coughs or congestion you may be suffering from.
- Neck Application. Rub the Vicks into the neck area for added benefits. The Vicks will help slow the mucus draining down into the back of your throat. This is great for women who have post nasal drip that is driving them crazy at night.
Vicks VapoRub is part of the solution to keep your cough, cold and nasal passageways clear when pregnant. The addition of a humidifier will also do wonders and has been known to stop the stiffness that many women suffer from when waking up in the morning.
There are also nasal strips that will force your nose open and allow more airflow to enter the nose.
Strips are a great option, and they can be used alongside Vicks to keep a woman’s nose, throat and sinuses clear. If you’re still unsure of using Vicks, you can consult with your doctor first.