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Why mothers medication matters will be launched at Effraspace London on 1st June and will be on sale from 8 June. So proud of my third baby
Breastfeeding and Antidepressants Facebook Live Session.
I am delighted that, as part of the UK Maternal Mental Health Matters Awareness Week,I will be hosting a Facebook live session to highlight which medications used to treat maternal mental illness can be taken while breastfeeding. The session will be from this Facebook page and will take place 2nd May at 7pm.
We know this can be a difficult and confusing subject and we often hear that both mums and professionals are unsure of the correct guidance.
I won’t be able to answer any personal medication queries during the session but you can contact me afterwards should you require further information.
Today alone I have had email contacts from Peru, the Netherlands, USA and Italy. It shows how the problems around breastfeeding on medication are the same all round the world. It is sad that so often breastfeeding mums are told they have to stop breastfeeding in order to be treated for chronic or acute illness – usually unnecesarily and not using evidence based resources
it seems that more people ask about the use of codeine than any other drug. The changes in guidance following the MHRA report in 2013 and 2015 seem to cause much confusion. We need to be aware as mothers that if we take codeine and our babies become sleepy (sleep longer or more frequently) then this is a sign that we may have the metabolism that concentrates the drug in breastmilk and should stop taking the drug. It takes 15 hours to be clear from the system but unless the baby shows signs of breathing difficulties it isnt a reason to panic . If there are breathing difficulties medical help should be sought urgently.
Codeine should only be used if paracetamol and ibuprofen/naproxen/diclofenac are providing insufficient pain relief or are contra indicated.
Dihydrocodeine has a cleaner metabolism and as such is preferred as the opiate painkiller (co-dydramol when combined with paracetamol) . This generally requires a prescription. In some areas codeine is still prescribed to breastfeeding mothers, in others it is totally forbidden. In this fact sheet I have tried to provide the full research history so that you can make an informed decision about what is right for you and your baby. We should also be alert to the fact that codeine is very addictive to us as adults so longterm use unless under medical supervision should be avoided