• Faye

Is a cold dangerous when pregnant?

Updated: Sep 27, 2021

Pregnant women are tough. But don't be afraid to admit when you are under the weather.

My pregnancy with my son was basically a festival of discomfort. I had morning sickness that lasted all the way up to my to my third trimester, pregnancy-induced carpal tunnel syndrome in my feet and legs, killer heartburn, and one memorable night where I thought I might actually die of gas. And, of course, there's the special misery that is getting a cold while pregnant. 

“Let's keep it real: If you go to the doctor to get some medicine, don't get your hopes up. Most of the good stuff is off-limits to moms-to-be.”

Pregnant women are tough. But don't be afraid to admit that you're feeling under the weather. For in the midst of cold and flu season, you may find that you’re under the weather far more often than you were before getting pregnant. During pregnancy, your immune system is less effective. This lower defense system is your body’s way of making sure the baby is not rejected, but it also makes you more susceptible to illness.

Doctor knows best - right?

If you go to the doctor to get some medicine, don't get your hopes up. Most of the good stuff is off-limits for moms-to-be. I mean my doctor pretty much told me 'be strong, you'll get through it.' Or your doctor might advise you to get more rest. Yeah, sure. Because rest is so... easy to come by when you are super pregnant, with a million things to do, and a big uncomfortable belly -- oh and you can't stop coughing. Another common suggestion is to make sure you stay hydrated, so remember to push the fluids. (This is probably when you should consider just living in the bathroom.)


The Kicker

It is possible that you may spread your germs to your husband and he might come down with a dreaded man cold. Please remember that he is the one who got you pregnant [and sick] in the first place, so you are under NO obligation to take care of him and his sniffles.


I tried that logic, but ended up taking care of him to try and get him better in time of our son to be born.


Dealing with it

Because they’re so common, it’s impossible to avoid colds and the flu completely. If you come down with one of these illnesses, you have to let it run its course. But I found out the following helped speed up my recovery and ease the symptoms:

·     eat plenty of fruits and vegetables

·     drink plenty of clear fluids, such as juice or water, to stay hydrated

·     soothe a sore throat with honey added to hot water [and honey] or non-caffeinated tea

·     use saline nasal spray and a humidifier to relieve congestion

·     apply Vicks rub on your neck and chest, and under your nose to help relieve congestion

·     get extra rest, your body is best able to recuperate when you rest


In most cases, your illness will not harm your baby. Use it as an excuse to pamper yourself and get some extra TLC, so you’ll be all better when baby arrives.


Sources: WebMD, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,

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