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So, I suffer from several long-term illnesses, including - but not limited to - lupus, fibromyalgia, endometriosis, migraines, hypertension, depression, anxiety, OCD, severe allergies, asthma, vertigo, an under-active thyroid, etc., etc..<br><br>
Suffice it to say, I take A LOT of medication.<br><br>
I was (officially) diagnosed with lupus when I was 11-years-old. I turn 30 this August. That's 19 years of trauma, of pain, of tears. It took a long time for me to get over being angry that this had happened to me, and although I do still fall into the trap of rage at my own body from time to time, I mostly just push through it and try my best to live my life without pitying myself.<br><br>
I've tried almost all of the natural therapies and/or treatments and still continue on with some of them. I've also tried nearly every medication on the market, and I hold a more than is healthy disdain for pharmaceutical companies.<br><br>
Whenever it's time for me to take my medicine my righteous indignation soars and every time I swallow it a little part of me shrivels up and dies. I take it because I have to, because if I don't I can't function and if I can't function I can't live and despite my many physical maladies, I have a pretty great life.<br><br>
The one thing about this site that has made me wary (and one of the reasons I put off joining for so long, if I'm being honest) is the fact that I take so much medication when it goes against my belief that we should try to live as naturally as possible. I consider myself to be pretty holistically-inclined, so I carry a lot of (self-imposed) guilt over how many chemicals I put into my body every day.<br><br><b>So, what thread was meant for was to ask this:</b> Do you take any prescription medication? Do you continue while pregnant and/or breastfeeding or stop/switch to something else?
 

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I take prescription medication when pregnant and breastfeeding. I stop what I can or what I must but I do not stop everything including still taking some Cat C and D drugs.<br><br>
Sometimes it is hard and I rarely share, IRL, what I am taking or have taken in the past for fear of being branded a 'bad mother' or 'weak' or not caring enough about my baby.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>mediumcrunch</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15412770"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I take prescription medication when pregnant and breastfeeding. I stop what I can or what I must but I do not stop everything including still taking some Cat C and D drugs.<br><br>
Sometimes it is hard and I rarely share, IRL, what I am taking or have taken in the past for fear of being branded a 'bad mother' or 'weak' or not caring enough about my baby.</div>
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I felt so alone.<br><br>
I don't even like people knowing that I'm sick. When I was younger, a pharmacist filed some kind of a complaint against me and my doctor because they thought it was "suspicious" that there were so many prescriptions being filled in my name, the narcotics especially. It got thrown out, and my Mom switched pharmacies immediately, but that incident has stayed with me.<br><br>
Your fears over what people might brand you are exactly what I have been afraid of. I'm sorry you go through this, but - selfishly - it's nice to hear that I am not the only one who goes through this.<br><br>
Thank you for sharing.
 

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I'm currently 15w1d pregnant with my 3rd child. I'm on 2 meds for my asthma (it always gets worse in pregnancy), 1 for bad GERD, and unfortunately had to go off my migraine meds but I was 6 weeks when I did so.<br>
You're not alone. It's a matter of benefit vs risk, IMO. For me, the risk of my asthma meds to the baby were outweighed by the risks of me not breathing. KWIM?
 

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I take both prescription and OTC category B and C medications for allergies while pregnant and breastfeeding. I've taken both prescription and OTC medications for pregnancy related symptoms while pregnant and breastfeeding. I have taken hormonal birth control while breastfeeding. I have taken steroids while breastfeeding.<br><br>
I did quit taking medication for depression (bipolar), anxiety, and OCD during my first pregnancy 3 years ago and I haven't gone back.<br><br>
I will admit that I'm <i>not</i> very holistically inclined though. I like MDC because it's one of the only online communities where I can talk to other women who are pregnant and breastfeeding a toddler and planning on CLWing and because mainstream child abuses like CIO and circumcision are not tolerated here or open to debate... so it's more the attachment parenting aspect that attracts me. I agree though that the pharmaceutical industry is pretty evil.
 

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<b>We can only do what we can do!</b> You said it yourself, you've tried natural things and hate needing to take meds, but can't function without some of them. Me too! With health issues like yours, it's not reasonable to get off all the meds. I have a number of issues too, including fibro, IBS, vertigo, allergies and asthma, and more. I may be pregnant and have had to decide what meds to avoid completely and which ones I can't function without. I know there's no way I can give a few of them up and it does bother me, both from a natural standpoint (and being anti-Big Pharma) and also because I worry about how meds can harm a developing baby. But I can only do what I can do. I do need meds to help with the pain. It's almost impossible for me to sleep without medication, as well. Like rparker, I'm keeping it to category B and a couple C meds. And remember that women all over the world are taking meds when they're pregnant and things turn out fine. That's how I keep myself sane these days as I consider the idea of being pregnant. You have to be able to function. You're doing what you need to take care of yourself, great job, mama! (And also like rparker said, we are here at MDC for many reasons.)
 

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You aren't alone. If you spend time on boards supporting women with pregnancies complicated by conditions like hyperemesis and pre-eclampsia you'll see women on varitable cocktails-often necessary to just *survive* pregnancy, let alone thrive and live a normal life. Add to that chronic conditions like lupus, fibro, asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, MS etc.....and there are a lot of women taking necessary medications.<br>
I believe most of us with chronic pain conditions endure a lot more pain than people understand when we drop our meds down to almost nothingwhen pregnant but still vilify us for the little we allow ourselves.<br>
I refuse to feel guilty about the nightly flexeril. If I don't take it I wake up feeling like I was beaten by a 2x4 and can barely get out of bed let alone function. I'm coping without my other meds but looking forward to the time when I can take them again, I am much better mother when not in pain.<br><br>
Unfortunately, society doesn't see much difference between a woman taking a necessary prescription drug and the pregnant woman doing street drugs. It doesn't help when many nurses and physicians have a 'too bad you are pregnant, just suffer' attitude.<br>
I once went to a 'doc in a box' for a double ear infection at about 6 1/2months pregnant. She handed me a scrip for Amoxicillin and told me, "If this doesn't work, don't come back here because I won't give you anything stronger". I ended up in the ER a few days later on New Years Day with two perforated ear drums and in excruciating pain. I ended up in a puddle when the lovely FNP I saw couldn't believe how bad my ears looked and promptly called the OB resident to find out what strong abx I could have and gave me some codeine for the pain-she also gave me a much needed hug.<br><br>
MY GP has chronic health problems and had them while pregnant, she is very understanding about how hard it can be to be in pain for weeks/months with no end in sight, even if there is nothing she can do, she understands. My rheumatologist? Nice lady but totally not comfortable with a pregnant or breastfeeding patient and really doesn't want to even see me until I have an old nursling or have weaned.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>mediumcrunch</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15416855"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">You aren't alone. If you spend time on boards supporting women with pregnancies complicated by conditions like hyperemesis and pre-eclampsia you'll see women on varitable cocktails-often necessary to just *survive* pregnancy, let alone thrive and live a normal life. Add to that chronic conditions like lupus, fibro, asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, MS etc.....and there are a lot of women taking necessary medications.<br>
I believe most of us with chronic pain conditions endure a lot more pain than people understand when we drop our meds down to almost nothingwhen pregnant but still vilify us for the little we allow ourselves.<br>
I refuse to feel guilty about the nightly flexeril. If I don't take it I wake up feeling like I was beaten by a 2x4 and can barely get out of bed let alone function. I'm coping without my other meds but looking forward to the time when I can take them again, I am much better mother when not in pain.<br><br>
Unfortunately, society doesn't see much difference between a woman taking a necessary prescription drug and the pregnant woman doing street drugs. It doesn't help when many nurses and physicians have a 'too bad you are pregnant, just suffer' attitude.<br>
I once went to a 'doc in a box' for a double ear infection at about 6 1/2months pregnant. She handed me a scrip for Amoxicillin and told me, "If this doesn't work, don't come back here because I won't give you anything stronger". I ended up in the ER a few days later on New Years Day with two perforated ear drums and in excruciating pain. I ended up in a puddle when the lovely FNP I saw couldn't believe how bad my ears looked and promptly called the OB resident to find out what strong abx I could have and gave me some codeine for the pain-she also gave me a much needed hug.<br><br>
MY GP has chronic health problems and had them while pregnant, she is very understanding about how hard it can be to be in pain for weeks/months with no end in sight, even if there is nothing she can do, she understands. My rheumatologist? Nice lady but totally not comfortable with a pregnant or breastfeeding patient and really doesn't want to even see me until I have an old nursling or have weaned.</div>
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Well said, <b>mediumcrunch</b>, thank you! I'm feeling much better now about the meds I'm taking.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>paintedfire</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15412675"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;"><b>So, what thread was meant for was to ask this:</b> Do you take any prescription medication? Do you continue while pregnant and/or breastfeeding or stop/switch to something else?</div>
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I was just prescribed flexeril today... category b and its going to help the intense pain I'm in better than a more dangerous prescription pain reliever would.<br><br>
I also was prescribed benedryl, also category b (in 2nd and 3rd tri... you want to avoid it in first and I did) several months ago... though I was told not to take it while on flexeril.<br><br>
When I was pregnant with DS I was put on a category c medication (its recently been bumped to b but was c back then) because it was the ONLY thing that took the edge off of my morning sickness.<br><br>
With DD I was put on a category c medication as well...<br><br>
My stance is... my doctor will not give me a medication where the benefits do not outweigh the risks. As far as we can tell the biggest risk from the flexeril is me having an allergic reaction to it... having been on it in the past we know that I have not then (yes one can randomly pop up but I'm less likely to react when I did not react before)<br><br>
My FP is a mother who has been through a lot herself and was recipient of last years Family Practitioner of the year for our state... I love her to death and very much respect any opinion she has. (It helps that I used to babysit for her and we were neighbors so I am VERY close to her)<br><br>
So I 100% trust that she will not do anything that is harmful to my baby. The first thing she did when she said she would not put me on any pain meds because she does not feel comfortable giving them to pregnant women... was to take out her little pocket pharmaceuticals book and check the safety of muscle relaxants. Every time she prescribes me something in pregnancy... she checks that first. EVEN things I know she knows is safe, she does not trust her memory over that book and does not want to risk giving me something that is not more beneficial than it is a risk.
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">I also was prescribed benedryl, also category b (in 2nd and 3rd tri... you want to avoid it in first and I did) several months ago... though I was told not to take it while on flexeril.</td>
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I take benadryl and flexeril together fairly frequently. BUT, I have been on both for years and the sedating effects either of them have on me is nil. I'm guessing that is the reason for caution in taking them at the same time. They can both really knock you out and together that could be a problem.<br><br>
I hope the flexeril helps your pain. It can be very effective for some people. For me, it has a building effect not unlike an SSRI. It isn't a take one and 20 minutes later the pain is fading kind of thing like motrin or a narcotic. It is take it regularly for a week or two and my overall pain gets better, if I go off it takes a few days but before long I am all tied up in knots again. It isn't that way for everyone though, some get more instantaneous relief.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>mediumcrunch</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15417316"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I'm guessing that is the reason for caution in taking them at the same time.</div>
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The reason for taking either is the fact that it will knock me out... so yeah taking them both is a big no-no for me lol it would be like doubling up the dose on either... and with two bigger kids I need to be able to wake up if necessary!
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>mediumcrunch</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15417316"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I take benadryl and flexeril together fairly frequently. BUT, I have been on both for years and the sedating effects either of them have on me is nil. I'm guessing that is the reason for caution in taking them at the same time. They can both really knock you out and together that could be a problem.<br><br>
I hope the flexeril helps your pain. It can be very effective for some people. For me, it has a building effect not unlike an SSRI. It isn't a take one and 20 minutes later the pain is fading kind of thing like motrin or a narcotic. It is take it regularly for a week or two and my overall pain gets better, if I go off it takes a few days but before long I am all tied up in knots again. It isn't that way for everyone though, some get more instantaneous relief.</div>
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(Sorry for the threadjack, paintedfire!) I'm definitely talking to my doctor about taking the flexeril every night now!
 

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I did, with one, because it was really clear that the risks were worth taking. You have serious health conditions that need to remain stable.<br><br>
For this pregnancy I'm fortunate that 5-HTP and osteopathic treatments totally replaced several prescriptions, but that was just a stroke of luck. As is that I could afford to see a naturopath, and the osteopath, and explore those alternatives long before I was pregnant.<br><br>
You can only do what you can do! The stress hormones that would come from suffering instead of taking your meds would be harmful to the baby, as would a decline in your health.<br><br>
Remember you are being a mother, not a martyr! Your baby needs you in good health more than anything else.
 

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Yes, a huge nod to the "you're a mother, not a martyr". I took myself off my meds before getting pregnant, with the intention of just suffering through the pregnancy (I have a number of issues, not the least of which being severe fibro.) I ended up having to take zofran for severe nausea, and as the pregnancy has progressed, I've been also put on meds for PIH, Raynaud's of the Nipples, Restless Legs Syndrome, and finally, my fibro pain. The only one I'm not giving up on (suffering through) is that I'm not taking anything for my depression. The meds that work for me have a small risk of PPHN (primary pulmonary hypertension of the newborn), and with this baby's other issues (she has a severe birth defect, see signature), including potential heart and lung problems, I just don't feel comfortable risking that in addition. HOWEVER, my doc will have my first dose of anti-depressant waiting in recovery after my c-section!<br><br>
Oh, and by the way, it has been studied, and there is no link between the meds I take and took and this baby's birth defect, in case that were to weigh on your mind. It's totally random.
 

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Wow! I can't tell you how much better I feel now. I was terrified of getting responses along the lines of "if you loved your baby, you'd stop putting all that junk in your body," despite knowing that the women here are more forgiving than that. I feel so bad for underestimating you all, but mostly I just feel grateful for all of you sharing with me. I feel much better now and I have you to thank for that. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love"><br><br>
So, I saw my rheumatologist again today to go over the plan for my medication and I just finished typing it up (dosages not included. I couldn't make out some of her handwriting - go figure) so that everyone here who feels bad about taking prescriptions can go "well, at least I'm not that girl who takes a hundred pills a day."<br><br>
Okay, here we go. Full disclosure (yikes!):<br><br><br><b>PRE CONCEPTION - BEFORE</b><br><br><b>Morning:</b> Advair (asthma), Bayer Low Dose Aspirin (heart), Flexeril (pain), Flonase (allergies), Plaquenil (lupus), Prevacid (reflux), Singulair (asthma), Vasotec (high blood pressure), Vicodin (pain), Zoloft (depression), Zyrtec (allergies)<br><br>
Night: Benadryl (allergies), Klonopin (anxiety), Neurontin (neuropathy), Trazodone (sleep aid)<br><br>
As needed: Aleve (swelling joints), Benadryl (allergies), EpiPen (allergy emergency), Imitrex (migraines), Antivert (vertigo), Miralax (constipation), Phenergan (nausea), Ventolin (asthma), Vicodin (pain)<br><br><b>PREGNANCY - NOW</b><br><br><b>Morning:</b> Advair (asthma), Flexeril (pain), Flonase (allergies), Plaquenil (lupus), Prevacid (reflux), Procardia (high blood pressure - <i>new</i>), Singulair (asthma), Vicodin (pain - <i>decreased dosage</i>), Zoloft (depression)<br><br><b>Night:</b> Ambien (sleep aid - <i>new</i>), Klonopin (anxiety), Neurontin (neuropathy), Zyrtec (allergies)<br><br><b>As needed:</b> Benadryl (allergies), EpiPen (allergy emergency), Imitrex (migraines), Antivert (vertigo), Miralax (constipation), Phenergan (nausea - <i>severe</i>), Ventolin (asthma), Vicodin (pain - <i>decreased dosage</i>), Zofran (nausea - <i>light</i>)<br><br><b>POST-PARTUM - FUTURE</b><br><br><b>Morning:</b> Advair (asthma), Flexeril (pain), Flonase (allergies), Plaquenil (lupus), Prevacid (reflux), Procardia (high blood pressure - <i>staying</i>), Singulair (asthma), Vicodin (pain - <i>still a decreased dosage</i>), Zoloft (depression), Zyrtec (allergies)<br><br><b>Night:</b> Benadryl (allergies), Klonopin (anxiety), Neurontin (neuropathy), Trazodone (sleep aid - <i>although I probably won't need it</i>)<br><br><b>As needed:</b> Alesse (birth control - <i>eventually</i>), EpiPen (allergy emergency), Imitrex (migraines), Antivert (vertigo), Miralax (constipation), Phenergan (nausea - <i>severe</i>), Tylenol, Ventolin (asthma), Vicodin (pain - <i>still a decreased dosage</i>), Zofran (nausea - <i>light</i>)<br><br><br>
Whew! Feel any better, ladies? I'm a one woman pharmacy over here. The past twenty-years have just been one big ball of fun. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/eyesroll.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="roll"><br><br>
Also, considering how most everyone in this thread deals with medical issues how do you guys feel about MRI's during pregnancy? I've had one scheduled for awhile - I'm been experiencing an increase of my vertigo and some various other possible neurological symptoms for a little while now. My doctor feels it would be okay (MRI machines don't actually involve radiation, just a very large magnet), but she's giving me time to think about it.
 

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MRI's in pregnancy? A heck of a lot better than a CT scan.<br>
I've only ever discussed it with one physician and he was a pediatrician who saw absolutely no problems with them since there isn't any radiation. Granted, there haven't been enough MRI's done on pregnant women to know the long term effects of those magnetic fields on the developing baby. As with anything like that *I* tend to prefer to wait until the baby is developed as possible.<br><br>
My last pregnancy I had two fluoroscopies (extremely short duration-for placement and re-placement of a PICC) and a VQ scan (rule out pulmonary embolism) by 17 weeks. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad">
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>paintedfire</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15418289"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Also, considering how most everyone in this thread deals with medical issues how do you guys feel about MRI's during pregnancy? I've had one scheduled for awhile - I'm been experiencing an increase of my vertigo and some various other possible neurological symptoms for a little while now. My doctor feels it would be okay (MRI machines don't actually involve radiation, just a very large magnet), but she's giving me time to think about it.</div>
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Again... if its <i>necessary</i> I wouldn't think twice about it! And that certainly sounds necessary to know HOW to help you get better.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>paintedfire</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15418289"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Wow! I can't tell you how much better I feel now. I was terrified of getting responses along the lines of "if you loved your baby, you'd stop putting all that junk in your body," despite knowing that the women here are more forgiving than that. I feel so bad for underestimating you all, but mostly I just feel grateful for all of you sharing with me. I feel much better now and I have you to thank for that. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love"></div>
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Makes me feel a lot better hearing from others, too. And I'm so sorry about all your health issues! You and I have too much in common there.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked"><br><br><b>MaerynPearl</b>, (how do you say Maeryn, btw, is it MARE-in?) I like your point about necessary. I know people who would suggest that some of my meds might not be necessary, especially during pregnancy. Well, if you want me to be a functioning person, they are! As you all understand. I <i>have</i> pulled a few meds and am trying to be careful but the bottom line is that it's ridiculous to be pretty much bed-ridden, unable to get anything done, when it doesn't have to be that way.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Arianwen1174</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15421161"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Makes me feel a lot better hearing from others, too. And I'm so sorry about all your health issues! You and I have too much in common there.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked"><br><br><b>MaerynPearl</b>, (how do you say Maeryn, btw, is it MARE-in?) I like your point about necessary. I know people who would suggest that some of my meds might not be necessary, especially during pregnancy. Well, if you want me to be a functioning person, they are! As you all understand. I <i>have</i> pulled a few meds and am trying to be careful but the bottom line is that it's ridiculous to be pretty much bed-ridden, unable to get anything done, when it doesn't have to be that way.</div>
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its May-Rin (the little girly in my tummys name when she finally comes out in august/september!)<br><br>
I think when it comes to necessity... and benefits vs. risk... it is up to a woman and her doctor to decide, no one else. If you feel they are necessary to take (and obviously you do) then they ARE.<br><br><br>
I do have a question though since this thread mentions it a lot<br><br><b>May I ask what dosages of Flexeril you ladies are taking?</b><br><br>
I was given a low dose, so low that my insurance does not even cover it and I had to get a higher dose and split them in half to take them!<br><br>
They are not knocking me out as intended and I want to ask my doctor if its possible to up my dosage, but if none of you are even comfortable taking a higher dose than what I was prescribed I wont even bother and will just ask to be put back on the benedryl! (I had some work done today and the pain is a lot more tolerable, though still present, so I think the benedryl may do the trick again... but the flexeril is supposed to help with my RLS as well... with a 4 year old and 7 year old and nearly 6 months pregnant I cant afford to keep missing out on sleep)
 

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before i got pregnant i took: advair (asthma), zyrtec (allergies), albuterol (asthma - as needed), and atenolol (skipped/early heartbeats and migraines).<br><br>
the only one i stopped was atenolol (class D). luckily my symptoms of both issues were better during preg- otherwise we would have been finding something else for that, for sure
 
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