General Question

BBSDTfamily's avatar

Can pregnant women safely take a women's multi-vitamin instead of a pre-natal vitamin?

Asked by BBSDTfamily (6834points) September 13th, 2009

Just wondering…. My pre-natal vitamins are almost $70/month and for 9 months of pregnancy it gets expensive! Just wondering if they are necessary or if they’re not much different from my regular mult-vitamin.

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19 Answers

Aethelwine's avatar

$70 a month? As long as you are getting the recommended amount of iron you should be fine with something over the counter.

Facade's avatar

The ones I had no, I was not pregnant, just looking for some extra nutrients were maybe $15 for 60 or so pills. Maybe find some that are less expensive than what you have now.

BBSDTfamily's avatar

@jonsblond Yes! It’s $68 and some change… maybe I should ask my doctor for a cheaper brand?

knitfroggy's avatar

I took over the counter vitamins when I was pregnant. I asked my doctor and he said OTC vitamins were fine. You could take a regular multivitamin but it’s probably not going to have the iron you need in it.

BBSDTfamily's avatar

@knitfroggy Thanks for the info…. I’ve seen an actual pre-natal OTC vitamin, I will try to go back and find it!

Aethelwine's avatar

@BBSDTfamily Yes! You will be fine with something that costs less. My children are straight A students and I can tell you I didn’t pay more than $10 per bottle of vitamins.

@knitfroggy is right about getting the iron that you need. I needed to take iron supplements but that didn’t cost much more.

knitfroggy's avatar

You can get them at the Walgreens for like $6.

Aethelwine's avatar

When is the baby due? There’s something in this Fluther water! :)

Facade's avatar

@jonsblond Please don’t say that lol

oratio's avatar

If you have a varied healthy diet, you don’t need vitamin supplements. Eating too much supplements over time is actually not very healthy.

BBSDTfamily's avatar

@jonsblond February 9th! It’s definitely the Fluther water… watch out @Facade !! :)

Facade's avatar

Nooo lol
I’ll leave the baby-making to…everyone but me :)

mattbrowne's avatar

What matters is the mix of the ingredients, not names or labels of products.

JLeslie's avatar

Look at the mg, and iu’s and just buy OTC that comes close. Most important are getting enough folic acid and iron (slowfe is a well respected brand for iron supplemet) and NOT overdosing A.

Did you ask your doctor for an alternative that is not so expensive? In your state they may not automatically substitute a generic, maybe there is a generic option if you want to get a prescription that would be less expensive?

ubersiren's avatar

That’s what I’m currently taking- the OTC prenatal. But, there are cheaper prescription vitamins, too.

@oratio : Being pregnant is a whole different ball game. You need more nutrients since you’re carrying another person inside you. It’s often difficult to eat the amount you need because a pregnant woman’s appetite is all wonky. Especially in the 1st trimester- I have barely been able to eat anything at all for being so sick to my stomach. It’s safer for the baby to get all the Folic Acid and Iron and other vits/mins he needs in utero.

MagsRags's avatar

We health care providers sometimes forget to consider prescriptive costs – did your OB or midwife start you out with samples, by any chance? The pharmaceutical companies love to give us free samples of their newest products with hopes that we’ll prescribe it for our patients to continue once they’ve tried the samples. Medications that have generic versions available are hardly ever available in our sample cupboard, because the companies know that they won’t profit from refills at the pharmacy because of of generic substitution .

The main difference between OTC prenatal vitamins and the prescriptive kind has generally been the amount of folic acid. OTCs have 400mcg, prescriptives have 1,000mcg. The latest trend in prescriptives is boutique type vitamins. There are some with DHA, an omega 3 that might help with fetal brain development, some that are chewable for women who have trouble swallowing pills, some with a stool softener built in for women with constipation, and so on.

Most of my patients take an OTC prenatal vitamin. If a pregnant woman can’t tolerate pregnancy vitamins at all they cause severe nausea for some, we recommend flintstones type chewable vitamin plus a separate folic acid pill.

casheroo's avatar

holy crap, that’s way too expensive.

I take Flinestones Complete…it has enough of everything you need. My OB said it was fine, and I took it with my son, and he’s perfect.

PandoraBoxx's avatar

You want folic acid in the vitamins when you’re pregnant, It’s important for spinal cord development.

As your pharmacist if there’s a generic equivalent for what you’re taking.

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