Many, many years ago, people used to smoke quite a bit. Ash trays were de rigueur for dinner guests at most homes 50+ years ago. Second-hand smoke wasn’t a concern, and not many raised an eyebrow when pregnant women smoked.
Today you wouldn’t think of doing anything like that if you were pregnant. Maybe a glass of wine, but never smoking.
Instead, both parents now actively participate in adjusting their behavior and diets to assure themselves of a healthier baby. We hear it all the time: “she’s eating for two, you know!”
The same goes for medication. Typically, the OB/GYN asks about what prescription medicine is taken — and whether it should or not be during pregnancy. What about over-the-counter drugs? Many have said it’s OK to take an occasional Tylenol, an acetaminophen, to relieve headache pain.
That’s about to change.
JAMA Pediatrics published a study entitled “Acetaminophen Use During Pregnancy, Behavioral Problems, and Hyperkinetic Disorders” that concluded:
Maternal acetaminophen use during pregnancy is associated with a higher risk for hyperkinetic disorders (HKDs) and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)-like behaviors in children. Because the exposure and outcome are frequent, these results are of public health relevance but further investigations are needed.
It’s a good study and JAMA seldom sounds such an alarm unnecessarily. In our opinion, headaches can be addressed by the right chiropractic care and the Foundation for Chiropractic Progress did the right thing in jumping all over this issue, citing these highlights:
According to the report, children whose mothers used acetaminophen were:
- 13 percent more likely to show ADHD-like behaviors
- 37 percent more likely to be diagnosed with HKDs
- 29 percent more likely to be prescribed ADHD medications
We’ve even gone so far as to advocate that parents take the drug-free path for treating ADHD. With the results of this study in mind, expectant mothers will think twice about taking an acetaminophen to relieve headache or other pain.
In more than twenty years of practice on East 7th Street, we’ve provided quality chiropractic care for hundreds of expectant mothers. We’ve found them to be more than receptive of non-invasive, drug-free options during a very important part of their life. Check with the American Pregnancy Association for more information on this topic — it mentions the adaptable table you’ll find in our office, too.
If you’re having second thoughts about taking OTC or prescription drugs during pregnancy, call us 212-260-2213 and we’ll be happy to discuss your options with chiropractic care.