Eye infections never happen at a convenient time. One of those times may be when a woman is pregnant or nursing. Eye doctors need to know if you might be pregnant or if your nursing so that they may prescribe the appropriate medication to treat your problem and protect your baby.
Most eye infections are treated with eye drops, although sometimes ointments or oral medications are indicated. Oral medicines pose the highest potential of transferring to the baby, although many medications are safe to do so. Eye drops have some potential transfer although the drug is greatly diluted by the time the body has absorbed it in to the blood stream. Ointments have the lowest transmission risk since the drug stays primarily on the eye and very little of the drug makes it to the blood stream.
- Always let your doctor know you may be pregnant or nursing. Never keep it a secret and don’t assume the doctor can tell by looking at you. It’s your responsibility to let the doctor know.
- Don’t wait too long when you have an eye infection. The longer you have an eye infection, the more difficult it is to treat which means you may need to be on more potent medications and/or on medications for a longer period of time. Don’t wait.
- Let you doctor know if you are on any other medications and if you have an allergies to any medications.
Also, ask your eye doctor if your eye infection is contagious. Some are, and some are not. This is a potential issue for nursing mothers because of the close contact with baby. Pay close attention to your baby’s eyes. Watch for discharge, redness, tearing, or rubbing. If noted, be sure to take your child to an eye doctor who specializes in pediatrics.
Most eye infections respond very well with the proper medications. Just be sure to see your eye doctor as soon as you suspect there’s a problem. Tell the doctor you may be pregnant or that you are pregnant. And tell the doctor if you’re nursing. Together, you will come up with the right plan of treatment and get back to feeling good.