Pregnancy is a time when a woman’s body is often extremely achey. It is also a time when the use of many drugs and other remedies is not recommended because of potential harm to the unborn baby. Biofreeze, a menthol-based cream helps ease muscle pain. But, is it safe for use during pregnancy? The Biofreeze company states on its webpage that Biofreeze is not safe for use while pregnant. This is not because it has been shown to cause harm to unborn babies, but because it has never been tested. Biofreeze is a combination of natural ingredients including menthol, holly extract, calendula, chamomile, juniper berry, Echinacea, and white tea. However, pregnant women must be careful of the medications they are exposed to because they may be harmful to developing babies. Just because it is not ingested or because it is naturally derived does not mean it is entirely safe for use when pregnant, making it especially important to do research. In fact, the website www.safefetus.com, a clearinghouse of information regarding various drugs and their safety to developing babies, while not listing Biofreeze as a specific hazard (it is not included in its database) does list many of the ingredients as unsafe (e.g., menthol) because of a lack of testing and not because they have been shown to cause harm.
How to Use Biofreeze While Pregnant
Decide whether you want to use Biofreeze when pregnant. The Biofreeze label states that you should ask your physician before use if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Apply Biofreeze sparingly if you decide to use it while pregnant. If Biofreeze helps you relieve pain and you decide to use it you should use as little as possible to reduce exposure as much as possible. You may also consider using the Biofreeze that comes in an applicator as to limit your exposure.
Perhaps use other forms of pain management. Tylenol is safe during pregnancy at recommended dosages. Stretching, massage, physical therapy, and even acupuncture can bring relief from discomfort during pregnancy.
Avoid heat. Hot baths and heating pads feel good to sore muscles but are not recommended for pregnant women because there is a risk of raising the body temperature above one that is safe for the developing baby.
Consult your doctor before using Biofreeze if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.