Need Advice: Taking Antidepressants while Breastfeeding?

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  1. Moms, I need your advice.

    I'm trying to be the best mom I can to my darling three-month old baby, but I'm having a hard time as I'm suffering from post-partum depression. My psychiatrist is recommending that I go on the antidepressant Zoloft.

    The only (and big) problem for me is that I am breastfeeding, and want to for at least a year as I know how beneficial it is for baby.

    My doctor said with Zoloft, there is virtually no risk to the baby as only a very small amount is found in the breastmilk of moms who take it, and that only one lab can even detect it in the baby's blood. (I also checked in The Nursing Mother's Companion book and it said Zoloft is safe and it isn't detected in the baby's bloodstream.)

    He said there is more risk of harm to babies with depressed moms, and these babies are themselves more prone to be depressed when they get older.

    Even with the above info, I'm just not sure what to do, because of the what-ifs. (I've read in other places where they caution taking antidepressants because it does pass into the breastmilk, and better safe than sorry).

    Do you think it is fine to go on Zoloft while breastfeeding? Should I consider weaning? Help please!
     
  2. Did you talk with your OB about this? I would do this ASAP.
    I think the most important thing above and beyond anything is your health.

    If it were me I would def go on the Zoloft. Esp if I was feeling crappy. It sounds like the risks are slim to none with this while breastfeeding.

    But again I will stress...talk to your OB! They know this stuff upside down and backwards.

    Good luck and keep us posted!!
     
  3. First of all, :hugs: I know what you are going through. I went through a spell of belated PPD after my DS's birth.
    Mom's health is paramount, of course, but- for the Breastfeeding mother, baby's health is at risk as well. I would say that if you have to take it, and does get passed to baby, wean your child, because breastfeeding isn't worth your health.
    I'm pretty sure you're not supposed to take those while BF, because it can, and most likely will pass into your milk, just like with smoking, or pretty much any other medication that you take. Unless your doctor tells you that it'd OK. I wouldn't do it, just to be safe.
    I mean, when breastfeeding, they put you on a hormone-free birth control (if you choose to take BC) because it passes to baby. I would just ask, it's the only way you're going to find out for sure. :yes:
     
  4. Stay on the meds. Its important for you to be feeling good during this time.
     
  5. Since Zoloft is considered safe to take while breastfeeding I would continue to do both. Your health is most important, but breastfeeding is also very important.

    Can you do the pump&dump method? Like take your Zoloft before you go to bed, when you know the baby won't be needing to feed for a few hours, pump in the morning and then dump it? That way it'll be unlikely that there's any breakdown product of the Zoloft left in your milk. It's what many breastfeeding women do when they may have had a glass or two of wine with dinner, etc.
     
  6. medications are also graded on an ABC scale, "A" being the worst..etc...I believe. Find out from the Dr. where Zoloft is on that scale.
     
  7. I agree with your doctor, you are much more harmful to your baby if you are depressed! I know, I've been there. I wasn't nursing, though so I was able to take any meds I needed. I know how awful that feeling of ppd is, so if the doctor says take it, I would!
     
  8. I would say take Zoloft. When my 2nd child was born I had a 8-month long bout with Postpartum and I wasn't diagnosed until recently. I went on the anti-depressant and I felt so much better. If we decide to have another child I feel very comforted to know that I can take Zoloft while breastfeeding (I talked to my doc about it). Your health and well-being are so important and you can enjoy the time with your child if you're feeling well. Good luck!
     
  9. I've taken Zoloft and breastfed before. It did me a world of good at the time, I was in such a funk that I don't think I would have been able to come out of it by myself. That said, some people find therapy very helpful. So if I had to do it again I'd do the Zoloft but also do the therapy in the hope of coming off the Zoloft sooner. And like the pp said, find out where Zoloft is on that scale, that will ease your mind I'm sure. Feel better soon! PPD sucks!
     
  10. I would talk to your pediatrician rather than your OB. Most of the OBs I know don't actually know that much about breastfeeding; the pediatricians are generally more up on it and may have lactation consultants in their office.

    If it doesn't pass into the breastmilk, I would say go on the Zoloft and breastfeed. I have two friends who have breastfed on antidepressants (Prozac for one and I think Wellbutrin for the other), and they have beautiful, healthy children.

    This isn't correct. They put you on a progesterone only pill (the mini-pill, which is still hormones) because the regular pill reduces milk production, not because the hormones can affect the baby. I had thought the same thing in the past, but it's strictly because of production.
     
  11. ^^ That is what my doctor told me, that it reduces milk production, and that because my body was all out of "whack" I don't need "extra" hormones, I guess. I have no idea, that's just what my doc told me. :confused1:
    I'm not on BC yet, even though I should be..we're doing "natural" family planning for now.
     
  12. ^^ I totally thought the same thing about the Pill, thought you couldn't be on it while BFing because it would affect the baby. Someone on here corrected me, and then I asked two doctors and two lactation consultants about it (I'm a little on the obsessive side, LOL.) There are a few women where it won't affect their production, apparently, but for most, it will really drop it down, so you don't want to take it while BF'ing. But it won't do anything harmful to the baby.

    Be careful with the natural family planning. I haven't gotten my period yet (I think our boys are almost exactly the same age), but a lot of my Moms' group friends have gotten theirs in the last month or two, meaning ovulation is kicking in!

    --- Sorry to go off topic!