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All You Need to Know About Taking Synthroid During Pregnancy
When you are pregnant, your body adapts to accommodate your growing fetus. This includes changes in the functioning of your body organs and glands, including your thyroid gland. It produces hormones that have many effects on the body’s activities. The thyroid hormones perform a critical role in the normal functioning of your brain, muscles, and heart. In some women, the thyroid does not produce enough hormones, which is called hypothyroidism. It is also possible to suffer from hypothyroidism during pregnancy.
If you have hypothyroidism when you are pregnant, you may wonder what treatment is safe for you and your growing baby. A first-choice treatment for the condition is the medication levothyroxine (Synthroid). Let’s learn how hypothyroidism affects pregnancy and why the medicine may be recommended. In addition, if you want to treat the condition and manage a healthy thyroid, you can buy Synthroid online.
How Hypothyroidism Affects Your Pregnancy?
If left untreated, hypothyroidism can have adverse effects on you and your developing fetus. A pregnancy with this condition can result in serious health complications. The following are among them:
- Having a miscarriage
- Stillbirth (loss of a baby in the womb after 20 weeks of pregnancy)
- Involuntary preterm labor (delivery before 37 weeks of pregnancy)
- An extremely high blood pressure condition (preeclampsia)
- Having anemia (lack of red blood cells or hemoglobin in the blood)
In the first trimester, thyroid hormones are also very important for your baby’s brain development. For the first three months of your pregnancy, you need to provide your baby with thyroid hormones. Your baby’s thyroid gland begins to function independently after 12 weeks of pregnancy. However, it will not be able to produce enough hormones until about 18 to 20 weeks into the pregnancy. In the first half of pregnancy, your baby still needs thyroid hormones to grow properly.
Role of Synthroid in Managing Hypothyroidism During Pregnancy
Synthroid or Levothyroxine is a synthetic version of a natural thyroid hormone called thyroxine (T4). In hypothyroidism, the body doesn’t produce enough T4. By taking the medicine, you raise your body’s level of T4 so that it can function correctly. Pregnant women and their developing fetuses need a properly functioning thyroid to stay healthy. The medicine benefits pregnant women in the following ways:
1. Maintaining Thyroid Hormone Levels
The medicine helps to replace or supplement the insufficient thyroid hormone levels in women with hypothyroidism. During pregnancy, the demand for thyroid hormones increases, and inadequate levels can lead to complications for both the mother and her developing fetus.
2. Preventing Hypothyroidism Complications
Untreated or inadequately treated hypothyroidism during pregnancy can result in health problems such as preterm birth, low weight at birth, and developmental issues for the baby. It helps prevent these complications by ensuring that thyroid hormone levels stay within the standard range.
3. Supporting Fetal Brain Development
An infant’s nervous system and brain must have ample levels of thyroid hormones to develop normally. The drug helps provide the necessary thyroid hormones needed for optimal fetal brain development.
4. Reducing the Risk of Maternal Complications
Hypothyroidism in pregnancy can also pose risks to the mother, including gestational hypertension, preeclampsia, and postpartum hemorrhage (a life-threatening condition that occurs after childbirth when there is significant blood loss). By maintaining proper thyroid hormone levels, The drug helps reduce the risk of these maternal complications.
Is It Safe to Take Synthroid During Pregnancy?
The use of Levothyroxine in pregnancy has a long history of safety. In fact, it is vital for women with hypothyroidism to continue taking Synthroid tablets throughout their pregnancy to ensure that they have enough thyroid hormone to support their own health as well as the health of their developing fetus. In both pregnant and nonpregnant women, it is a first-choice medication to treat hypothyroidism. It has not been found to increase the risk of miscarriage or congenital disabilities.
A study published in BMC Endocrine Disorders in 2021 found that taking Levothyroxine during pregnancy may lower the risk of problems for women with mild thyroid issues. They looked at 7 controlled trials and 6 observational studies. The results showed a lower risk of losing the pregnancy and neonatal death with Synthroid tablets. However, it didn’t affect outcomes during labor or the child’s cognitive status at the age of 3 or 5 years old.
Hence, The study suggests that Levothyroxine can be beneficial for pregnant women with fewer thyroid issues, reducing certain risks without causing problems during labor or affecting the child’s cognitive development.
Another population-based cohort study published in Springer Nature Journal in 2022 understands the effects of taking Levothyroxine during pregnancy on birth and child development. Among 422,156 mother-child pairs, 2125 children were born to mothers who used Levothyroxine. The study found a higher risk of preterm birth in these children compared to those born to mothers without thyroid-related issues. No increased risk was observed for small size at birth.
The findings support caution in using Levothyroxine during pregnancy. The increased risk of preterm birth may be related to underlying thyroid issues, but more research is needed to support the facts.
Is It Important to Adjust Synthroid Dose During Pregnancy?
When hypothyroid women are pregnant, their Synthroid dose is often increased. Thyroid hormone levels need to be increased when you are pregnant. In women with standard thyroid function, the thyroid gland increases thyroid hormone production to meet this increased demand. It is often necessary to increase Levothyroxine doses during pregnancy for women with hypothyroidism.
As the American Thyroid Association points out, treating hypothyroidism during pregnancy is very important because low thyroid hormone levels may harm the unborn child or even cause miscarriage. As soon as pregnancy is confirmed, endocrinologists suggest pregnant women take a more heightened dose of Levothyroxine and get blood tests for TSH more frequently to ensure that the level stays normal.
What Is the Recommended Dose of Synthroid During Pregnancy?
The recommended dose of synthroid tablets varies based on how severe the hypothyroidism is and the woman’s weight. According to the American Thyroid Association, the recommended dose is determined by weight. Pregnant women typically start with doses ranging from 1.20 to 2.33 micrograms per kilogram per day. This means if a woman weighs 70 kilograms, her daily Levothyroxine dose may be between 84 and 163 micrograms.
[Note: It’s crucial for healthcare providers to assess individual needs and adjust the dosage accordingly, ensuring optimal thyroid hormone levels for both the mother and the developing baby].
Is the Levothyroxine Dose Adjusted After Delivery?
Once you deliver the baby, your body won’t require as much thyroid hormone as it used to. You will likely return to your pre-pregnancy dosage if you were taking Levothyroxine before you became pregnant. During the first six weeks after giving birth, you should recheck your thyroid hormone levels in order to ensure that you are taking the right amount of thyroid hormone.
It is likely that if you were taking Levothyroxine during pregnancy for the treatment of hypothyroidism, you would be able to stop taking it after birth. In approximately 6 weeks after delivery, you will be checked for thyroid hormone levels in order to ensure you are no longer in need of medication for thyroid issues.
What Risks Are Associated with Synthroid Use in Pregnancy?
It is important to consider potential risks before starting Synthroid use during pregnancy, even though the medication has benefits.
Synthroid Side Effects
There are side effects associated with Synthroid, just as with any medication. Most pregnant women tolerate the medicine well, with minimal side effects. Common side effects include:
- Hair loss
- Weight loss (if the dosage is too high)
- Nervousness or irritability (if the dosage is too high)
- Tremors or shaky hands
The side effects that may occur are usually mild. If the dosage of Synthroid is too high, it can lead to symptoms of hyperthyroidism, such as rapid heartbeat, excessive sweating, chest pain, nervousness, or feeling irritable. Pregnant women should be closely monitored to avoid excessive dosages. It’s essential for them to work closely with their healthcare provider to monitor thyroid levels and adjust medication dosage as needed.
A risk-benefit analysis should be conducted when considering Synthroid tablets during pregnancy. In women with hypothyroidism, discontinuing treatment or not receiving treatment may increase the complications. If left as it is, low thyroid levels can lead to major health risks for both the mother and the baby and can also make it more challenging for the mother to get pregnant. In order to ensure a specific approach that takes into account both the mother’s well-being and her child’s needs, it is vital to speak with a healthcare professional about the potential challenges and benefits of the procedure.
Natural Alternatives to Manage Hypothyroidism During Pregnancy
To manage hypothyroidism during pregnancy, a doctor usually prescribes medication such as Synthroid, but some women might consider natural alternatives. Here are some natural approaches, but their efficacy can differ, and they may not be suitable for everyone:
- Iodine-rich Foods: It is essential for thyroid function, but it’s important to be cautious with the supplementation during pregnancy. Including iodine-rich foods in your diet, such as seaweed, fish, dairy, and eggs, may help support thyroid health.
- Selenium Supplementation: It is a trace mineral that plays a part in the metabolism of thyroid hormone. Brazil nuts, sunflower seeds, and fish are good dietary sources of selenium. However, it’s important not to exceed recommended levels, as excessive selenium intake can be harmful.
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Foods that are affluent in flaxseeds, omega-3 fatty acids, chia seeds, walnuts, and fatty fish may have anti-inflammatory properties and could potentially support thyroid function.
- Adaptogenic Herbs: Some herbs, known as adaptogens, may help the body adapt to stress. Ashwagandha and holy basil are examples of adaptogenic herbs that some people use to support thyroid health. However, research on their safety and efficacy during pregnancy is limited, so it’s crucial to consult with a healthcare professional.
- Avoid Goitrogenic Foods: Certain foods, known as goitrogens, can interfere with thyroid function. These foods include soy, cruciferous vegetables (such as broccoli and cabbage), and some fruits. While these foods are generally healthy, it’s preferred to eat them in moderation and preferably cooked rather than raw.
- Exercise Regularly: Engage in regular, moderate exercise with your healthcare provider’s approval. It can raise your energy levels and manage weight, which is important for thyroid health.
- Lifestyle Modifications: Stress management techniques, such as yoga, deep breathing exercises, and meditation, may help support overall well-being, including thyroid health. Adequate sleep and regular exercise can also contribute to a healthy hormonal balance.
It’s important to note that hypothyroidism during pregnancy needs careful monitoring and administration by a healthcare professional. If you are considering natural methods, it’s essential to discuss them with your healthcare professional to make sure that they are secure and appropriate for your specific situation.
While particular lifestyle and dietary modifications can complement the management of hypothyroidism during pregnancy, it’s crucial to note that these should not replace prescribed medications like Levothyroxine. If you want to manage your thyroid health effectively during pregnancy, buy Synthroid online from the best Canadian online pharmacy, Polar Bear Meds, at the most affordable prices, conveniently delivered to your doorstep.
Synthroid in Pregnancy: Worth It or Not?
Synthroid, or Levothyroxine, plays a significant role in managing hypothyroidism during pregnancy, ensuring the well-being of both mother and baby. Untreated hypothyroidism poses serious risks, including miscarriage, preterm labor, and preeclampsia. The drug effectively maintains thyroid hormone levels, supporting fetal brain development and preventing complications like preterm birth. The recommended dosage, often adjusted during pregnancy, aligns with the American Thyroid Association principles. Several studies suggest its safety, with studies indicating a lower risk of pregnancy loss with its use.
While natural approaches may complement treatment, they cannot replace medication. A risk-benefit analysis is essential, recognizing the mild side effects of the drug. Ultimately, Synthroid, when prescribed and monitored by healthcare professionals, proves invaluable in ensuring a healthy pregnancy for women with hypothyroidism. Always consult with your healthcare provider for the best advice.