Aleve During Pregnancy & Breastfeeding

by on April 27, 2012


Aleve is ranked as a pregnancy category C drug by the FDA—or Food and Drug Administration. This means that it is unknown whether or not the medication causes harm to an unborn fetus since adequate studies have not been conducted.

Many physicians recommend that pregnant women do not take Aleve (Naproxen) since observational studies have shown that taking these medications in the third trimester of pregnancy can increase the risk for significant birth defects. Aleve and naproxen pass into breast milk, so nursing mothers should either discontinue the use of naproxen or stop breastfeeding until a few days after completing their treatment with the medication.

Should Women Use Aleve during Pregnancy

Pregnant women are advised to be very careful in what food, drinks, and substances they ingest before birth. Both the bodies of the pregnant woman and her baby have a high sensitivity to all nutrients distributed. Although taking Aleve in very small doses while pregnant will not cause any serious symptoms or reactions, Doctors and Pharmacists do not recommend using this NSAID while pregnant.

Clinical analysis of the effect of Aleve on a pregnant woman’s body and her unborn baby indicate that Aleve may cause more damage to the child than the pregnant woman. Generally, this over the counter medication is only recommended to help relieve pain and inflammation for specific health conditions.

In essence, pregnant women should take every precaution they can while taking care of their unborn baby before birth. All nutrients that are absorbed and distributed from the mother to the baby can influence the health and development of their body at this stage in their life. For this reason, pregnant woman should strive to maintain a balanced diet with plenty of vitamins, minerals, and essential nutrients that are responsible for the development of tissues in the baby as well as the mother. Additionally, the stage of pregnancy the woman is in will determine whether it is safe to use Aleve to reduce pain and inflammation. Several harmful or toxic effects are produced by Aleve that can affect a baby’s body that is still growing and developing.

Side Effects during Pregnancy

Scientific studies have linked the use of Aleve during pregnancy to the formation of many pregnancy complications.

One study showed that the use of Aleve during early stages of pregnancy increases the risk of having a miscarriage. Additionally, scientists also believe that the use of Aleve during pregnancy increases the risk of placental abruption, which can be very damaging to the baby. Some of the identified health risks of taking Aleve during pregnancy are the formation of heart and lung problems in your child, which can cause cellular degeneration throughout the course of their life. Furthermore, the nutrients that are passed from the mother to the baby are acquired during breastfeeding, which is why the use of Aleve is not recommended even after birth as well.


The use of Aleve to relieve mild to moderate pain during pregnancy creates more health risks than benefits. With this being said, Doctors and Pharmacists recommend replacing Aleve with a painkiller that contains acetaminophen instead. The primary pain-relieving chemical contained in Aleve is responsible for causing many of the health risks and adverse reactions in the body during pregnancy and breastfeeding. In order to ensure the healthy development of your baby, it is wise to avoid using Aleve before, during, or after pregnancy and breastfeeding. If you need to take Aleve to assist your health condition, you should contact your Doctor to find the best solution for you and your baby.