Like most chronic allergic problems, asthma may get better for some women during pregnancy and worse for others. Because the airway is already working overtime during pregnancy (the amount of air you move with each breath increases), asthma can be particularly worrisome at this time. If your airway is compromised and you’re not getting enough oxygen, your baby may not be getting enough oxygen either. So, for your health and your baby’s, it’s particularly important to take care of asthma during pregnancy. Try these helps in managing your asthma:
- Early in your pregnancy (or even better, when you are planning to conceive) consult your family physician or allergist and your obstetrician to review your current asthma management program. Determine what self-help regimens you can use and which medications you can take while you’re pregnant. Depending on the frequency and severity of your asthma, it may be wise to repeat this consultation later in your pregnancy. Some medications cause different problems at different stages of pregnancy.
- Avoid unnecessary exposure to allergens, primarily cigarette smoke and pollutants. Pay particular attention to your sleeping environment.
- Keep your nasal passages and sinuses.
- Seek medical attention and treat your asthma early, before the attack escalates to compromise your breathing. While pregnant, many women find it’s necessary to call the doctor earlier and to treat their asthma more aggressively than before they were pregnant.