Pregnant and anxious: the risks of medication

During pregnancy there is a concern that remains constant and stronger than any other thought and that is that the baby is born healthy. That is why there is a widespread fear of having to take medication during pregnancy, something that is often unavoidable. In the case of anxiety disorders, when they occur at the same time as a pregnancy, is it convenient to take anxiety medication?

Anxiety in pregnancy

Anxiety disorders do not understand appropriate circumstances or opportune moments.  The truth is that it is never a good time to suffer from an anxiety problem, but if there is a particularly inopportune moment that is pregnancy. You may be suffering from anxiety long before you got pregnant and then the question is whether you will be able to maintain your anxiety medication.

But you may not have noticed any anxiety problem before and it appears during pregnancy. It is something very common, just like depression in pregnancy or prenatal depression, and which finds its origin in the excessive worry that maternity implies, the vital changes that are about to occur and, of course, the hormonal changes that make it impossible to have a minimum of control over the emotional balance.

Although it is a sought and planned pregnancy, it is very normal to be afraid of this new stage. Doubts arise that turn into fears about whether you will be a good mother, if you will know how to take care of your baby, if you will be able to reconcile all facets of your life, if your partner will support you in maternity… and a host of other worries ranging from having everything ready for the arrival of the baby to planning how long you will be able to be off work. It’s not uncommon for anxiety and stress levels to skyrocket at this time.

How to treat anxiety in pregnancy?

The last thing you want is to have to deal with anxiety during your pregnancy, but this is a kind of anticipatory anxiety. You are afraid of having to treat your anxiety with drugs in case it could harm your baby, so that worry generates more nerves, more anguish and more anxiety. You must be clear that, on many occasions, you will have to treat anxiety symptoms with pills, whether or not you are pregnant.

Although the ideal is not to take any medication during pregnancy, there are some drugs in the benzodiazepine group that present great risks for the development of the baby. The same happens with some antidepressants but, in any case, any decision in this regard must be made by a doctor. On the other hand, it also seems to prove that suffering great stress or a high level of anxiety and anguish during pregnancy can harm the baby.

So if you suffer from anxiety while pregnant, don’t think you should let it go by not taking medication. See your doctor and together you can find the most appropriate treatment for your anxiety, which should include psychological therapy, as well as beneficial relaxation techniques.

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