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  1. Breastfeeding with implants
  2. Drinking alcohol
  3. Having COVID-19 symptoms or vaccine
  4. Taking illegal drugs
  5. Taking medication
  6. Using birth control

Taking medication

If you're taking regular medication, speak to your GP or healthcare professional, ideally before your baby is born.

Most medicines can be taken while you're breastfeeding without harming your baby.

Medicines you can take while breastfeeding

While you're breastfeeding, you can take the following medicines:

  • most antibiotics
  • the painkiller paracetamol – you should check with a GP or midwife before taking paracetamol if it's combined with other medicines
  • asthma inhalers
  • vitamins at the recommended dose
  • some methods of contraception and some cold remedies but not all – check with your GP, health visitor or pharmacist
  • dental treatments, local anaesthetics and routine vaccinations – including MMR, tetanus, flu, whooping cough and COVID-19

Check with a GP or midwife before taking any other types of painkillers, such as ibuprofen.

You can take some medicines used to treat postnatal depression, but always check with a GP, your midwife, health visitor or a pharmacist who can advise you.

Ask for advice

If you're ever unsure, always check with your GP, midwife, health visitor or pharmacist. They can help you make an informed decision about medication.

For more information about breastfeeding and medicines:

National Breastfeeding Helpline

For confidential breastfeeding information and support, call the National Breastfeeding Helpline on 0300 100 0212. Lines are open 9:30am to 9:30pm every day.

Breastfeeding from Start for Life

The Breastfeeding Friend has lots of useful information and expert advice to share with you – and because it's a digital tool, you can access it 24/7.