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Asthma and Pregnancy: Information to Help You and Your Baby

 

Asthma is one of the most common medical concerns during pregnancy. If you are pregnant with asthma, here is some information to help you give your baby a better chance for a strong, healthy start.

Your asthma symptoms may change during pregnancy. About 1/3 of pregnant woman have worse asthma symptoms. And another 1/3 see their asthma symptoms get better.

Changes

Keep your asthma well-controlled to benefit both you and your baby. If you breathe better, your baby can get oxygen it needs from your blood. But if your asthma is uncontrolled, the fetus may not get the oxygen needed to grow and develop.

Asthma may also cause complications during pregnancy, such as:

  • A small increased risk of preterm (early) labor and delivery
  • High blood pressure and a related condition known as pre-eclampsia
  • Low birth weight (babies born weighing less than 5 pounds, 8 ounces)

Is asthma the direct cause of these issues? More research is needed. But they may be factors, so keeping your asthma well-controlled may help reduce the chances of facing these complications.

Complications

Work with your doctors to find the best asthma medicines for you. Some doctors feel certain asthma medicines are safer during pregnancy than others. Your doctors may want to change your asthma medicines. Talk with your doctors early in your pregnancy and throughout about your asthma treatment plan.

Aim for better health overall. Follow your doctors’ directions for exercise. Choose healthy food options when possible. Talk with your doctor about your vitamin D levels. Try to reduce stress. Get your flu and COVID-19 vaccines. All of these factors may affect your health and your baby’s. And they may influence whether or not your child develops asthma.

Don’t smoke, or quit smoking if you do. Smoking can worsen your asthma. And it’s a major risk factor that can increase your child’s chances of developing asthma.

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Black mothers are three to four times more likely to die from pregnancy-related complications. The Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act aims to end maternal deaths and close racial and ethnic disparities in maternal health outcomes.

Ask your legislators to support the Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act. Use our tool below to send an email to your representative. You can also choose to post your message on Twitter. Just follow the steps below.

The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) is the largest and oldest nonprofit patient organization dedicated to asthma and allergies. Our online community includes public blogs. To post a comment, you will need to register or sign in.

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