Can You Have Cough Drops While Breastfeeding?

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By Krystal Duhaney | Updated on Dec 3, 2023
Image for article Can You Have Cough Drops While Breastfeeding?

Yes, you generally can use cough drops while breastfeeding, but with a bit of caution. Most cough drops are mainly just sugar and flavorings, but some contain menthol or other active ingredients. Here's where it gets a bit tricky: some studies have suggested that peppermint, which includes menthol, can potentially decrease milk supply1 

While these effects aren’t fully proven and likely depend on the amount you consume, it's still something to be mindful of, especially if you're already dealing with low milk supply. It's also important to keep in mind that certain medicated cough drops contain ingredients that could potentially affect your baby, like certain types of sedatives.

As always, it's a good plan to touch base with your healthcare provider if you're not sure about a certain brand or type of cough drop.

Pregnant woman holding her stomach on a bed with a plant in the background

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  1. Norihiro Suzuki, Yusaku Tsugami, Haruka Wakasa, Takahiro Suzuki, Takanori Nishimura, Ken Kobayash"Menthol from Mentha piperita Suppresses the Milk Production of Lactating Mammary Epithelial Cells In Vivo and In Vitro"Nov 13, 2020https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/mnfr.202000853.


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Updated on Dec 3, 2023

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Can You Have Cough Drops While Breastfeeding?

 Krystal Duhaney Profile Photo
By Krystal Duhaney | Updated on Dec 3, 2023
Image for article Can You Have Cough Drops While Breastfeeding?

Yes, you generally can use cough drops while breastfeeding, but with a bit of caution. Most cough drops are mainly just sugar and flavorings, but some contain menthol or other active ingredients. Here's where it gets a bit tricky: some studies have suggested that peppermint, which includes menthol, can potentially decrease milk supply1 

While these effects aren’t fully proven and likely depend on the amount you consume, it's still something to be mindful of, especially if you're already dealing with low milk supply. It's also important to keep in mind that certain medicated cough drops contain ingredients that could potentially affect your baby, like certain types of sedatives.

As always, it's a good plan to touch base with your healthcare provider if you're not sure about a certain brand or type of cough drop.

Pregnant woman holding her stomach on a bed with a plant in the background

Want evidence-based health & wellness advice for fertility, pregnancy, and postpartum delivered to your inbox?

Your privacy is important to us. By subscribing you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms & Conditions.

Expectful uses only high-quality sources, including academic research institutions, medical associations, and subject matter experts.

  1. Norihiro Suzuki, Yusaku Tsugami, Haruka Wakasa, Takahiro Suzuki, Takanori Nishimura, Ken Kobayash"Menthol from Mentha piperita Suppresses the Milk Production of Lactating Mammary Epithelial Cells In Vivo and In Vitro"Nov 13, 2020https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/mnfr.202000853.


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