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Discomforts like a sore throat, painful muscles or a stuffed nose are capable of bringing down your productivity levels. Needful treatment is required to make these from turning worse. In this milieu, meds such as Nyquil are widely used. Nyquil has three (3) key chemicals in it – namely, acetaminophen, dextromethorphan and doxylamine. But, can you use Nyquil when you are pregnant? It helps to have more details before commencing your medication plan.

What is Nyquil?

This is a drug made of a combination of a few key substances viz., acetaminophen, doxylamine and dextromethorphan. Of these three chemicals, doxylamine is works as an anti-histamine med. It enables greater control over symptoms of allergies such as watery eyes, itchy skin, blocked nose, watery discharge from your nose, swelling, pain, etc. The second key ingredient – dextromethorphan – works as a cough suppressing med. It stops the impulses that produce a cough. Last but not the least, acetaminophen helps maintain body temperature; one of the main benefits of this 3rd chemical is its ability to reduce spells of fever.

It is a safe thing to know that Nyquil is never taken for the treatment of coughing – mainly those triggered by COPD – i.e., chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases. COPD includes ailments such as bronchial asthma, asthma and bronchitis. Most of these are linked to an excessive accumulation of mucus deep in the nasal pathways.

Can you use Nyquil while you are pregnant?

The presence of doxylamine in it can make you dizzy and/or drowsy. You may feel being lightheaded once you have taken a dose of Nyquil. Due to this property, you are advised to take it during night times. In some versions of Nyquil, moderate traces of alcohol – to the tune of 9% – are added or some may have phenylephrine in them. Both these are known to be unsafe for your fetus.

On this same note, it is important to check if other two key ingredients i.e., dextromethorphan and acetaminophen are safe to use during pregnancy. Above all, exert maximum caution if alcohol and / or phenylephrine are present in your drug. Though not all forms of Nyquil have these two substances, it is highly recommended to check with your pharmacist of it prior to use.

Of these two, phenylephrine has decongesting capabilities. This function is performed through the constriction of arteries (and veins). If you are pregnant, this chemical may decrease the flow of blood through your placenta. You need to know that your fetus gets blood and food through this tube. Once blood supply stands restricted, odds of fetal damage tend to get high. In some mothers, use of meds with phenylephrine can cause hypertension or a sudden increase in blood pressure level.

Similarly, alcohol can breach the placenta and thus gain access to your fetus. Alcohol is known to trigger a few developmental problems in your baby. In some rare instances, miscarriages have also been reported.

Safe use of Nyquil

It is highly recommended to keep away from meds categorised as anti-histamines or avoid intake of drugs that may contain anti-histamines in them. Also, is can be unsafe to take OTC meds such as Tylenol (which contains acetaminophen). As Nyquil contains a sizable share of acetaminophen, you may accidentally take an overdose of acetaminophen. As an added precaution, it is considered safe to talk to your pharmacist if you are taking non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as naproxen, ibuprofen, etc. Owing to these potential risks of drug interactions, it is a wise thing to take Nyquil with the consent of your caregiver.


Information provided here are only of supplementary nature. Information shared here does not substitute a qualified doctor’s advice. This website is not suggesting intake of this drug as safe or appropriate. Hence it is advised to talk to your doctor before consuming this med or any other drug.

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