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Can I take paracetamol while I'm breastfeeding?

Yes, you can take paracetamol. It appears in your breast milk in small amounts and is unlikely to cause any harm to your baby. For further information, speak to your GP, pharmacist or dentist. Let them know that you’re breastfeeding before you take any medicine.

You should seek advice from your GP before taking paracetamol if your baby was born early (prematurely), had a low birth weight or has a medical condition.

Different forms of paracetamol

Paracetamol can come in different forms, such as:

  • tablets
  • capsules
  • oral suspensions (liquid medicines)

Paracetamol is also often combined with other medicines, such as codeine (called co-codamol). However, these other medicines may not be suitable to take while you’re breastfeeding. This is why you should always check with a healthcare professional, such as your pharmacist or GP.

Getting advice

Read the patient information leaflet that comes with your medicine or read the information on the packet.

If you have any concerns, or need any help understanding the information and relating it to your own situation, you can:

  • talk to your midwife, health visitor, GP or pharmacist
  • read the drugs in breast milk factsheets by the Breastfeeding Network
  • call the drugs in breast milk helpline on 0844 412 4665
  • call NHS 111 if available in your area

Read the answers to more questions about medicines.

Further information:


Page last reviewed: 19/03/2015

Next review due: 28/02/2018