Is Chamomile Tea Safe During Pregnancy
Chamomile tea has been popular for use as a soothing tea. This tea can be helpful in relieving upset stomachs and sleeping disorders. It sounds like something a pregnant woman needs. Sleeping problems and nausea frequently affect women during pregnancy which could result in the conclusion that this tea is good during pregnancy. But, this is not the whole story.
The herb chamomile is part of the Aster family. The FDA has included it on a list of herbs generally regarded as safe. There is one word of caution if you are allergic to ragweed, daisy flowers or plants in the Aster family, you should avoid chamomile whether or not you are pregnant!
Strong arguments have been expressed for and against the use of chamomile tea during pregnancy. Unfortunately, natural herbs and vitamins are not evaluated and controlled by the FDA using the same vigorous standards applied to prescription medications. Because there has not been an official determination on the safety of chamomile during pregnancy, the debate continues. However, extensive information has been made available citing both the pros and cons of chamomile tea use by pregnant women. If you are pregnant and want to drink chamomile tea, be sure you do some homework and then make an informed decision one way or the other.
The American Pregnancy Association cautions that there has been a lack of medical research on the safety issue of this tea. This group recommends peppermint tea, red raspberry leaf, or lemon balm as possible alternate choices. Many health care professionals recommend only drinking herbal tea after the first trimester and then in moderation. One of the most serious side effects of chamomile tea is the potential for early contractions of the uterus. This could lead to miscarriage and other complications. It was emphasized that serious side effects occur when the tea is used incorrectly; for example, too strong, too much or poor quality tea.
On the positive side of the debate, chamomile tea and pregnancy are not always in conflict with each other. There have been numerous reports of relief from nausea and vomiting when chamomile tea was used during pregnancy. For women with this problem, this can be a huge benefit. Again, the quality of the tea and amount consumed are keys to a good result.
In the final analysis before you make a decision on chamomile tea during pregnancy, sift all of the information through your common sense filter. Primary considerations appear to be the quality of the chamomile tea and the amount consumed. As in many things in life, moderation is essential. It is also extremely important that you discuss this with your medical health care professional. Factors such as personal health, medical disorders, or medications can play a role in the effect chamomile tea will have on you.