Experts are urging pregnant women to rethink their usual habits when treating the dreaded flu virus. Most people wouldn’t think twice before heading to the pharmacy for the latest “flu remedy” but expectant mothers have been urged to speak to their obstetrician before considering any over the counter treatments.

Many flu relief drugs contain ibuprofen or other ingredients which may not be recommended for pregnant women.

They are more likely to suffer from complications and illnesses cause by the flu due to changes in their immune system.

The official line from the NHS is that mothers to be should avoid taking any medicines, particularly during the first three months of pregnancy. They state that conditions such as colds or minor aches and pains often don’t need treating with medicines. Pregnant women are on the NHS’s list of at-risk groups and will be offered the flu shot free to ensure they are protected against catching flu and developing serious complications.

A recent study confirmed the vaccine’s safety and indicated expectant mothers who were not vaccinated were at a greater risk of miscarriage. The research found no evidence that the vaccine increases the risk of a miscarriage. The study focused on more than 113,000 pregnancies and found that the risk of fetal death was nearly twice as high for women who weren’t vaccinated as it was in vaccinated mothers.

If you are unsure about getting vaccinated against flu or how you should treat the flu then we would strongly advise that you speak to your GP or midwife.