Anxiety Home > SNRIs and Breastfeeding

A number of clinical studies have been conducted on the effects of breastfeeding while taking antidepressants like SNRIs. Breastfeeding babies whose mothers are taking SNRIs should be monitored closely for any side effects because the drugs appear to pass through breast milk in high levels. Your healthcare provider will weigh both the risks and benefits of SNRIs and breastfeeding in your situation before making a recommendation.

SNRIs and Breastfeeding: An Overview

SNRIs (serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors) are passed through breast milk. Because of the potential serious side effects that could occur in the nursing infant, the manufacturers of SNRIs generally recommend that healthcare providers look at the possible risks and benefits before recommending SNRIs while breastfeeding. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or thinking of breastfeeding, make sure to let your healthcare provider know.
Practically, when healthcare providers are asked about SNRIs and breastfeeding, they often advise their patients that it is okay to breastfeed while taking the medication. This is because, in many cases, the benefits of breastfeeding a child outweigh the possible risks.

SNRIs and Breastfeeding: What Does the Research Say?

A few studies have looked at antidepressant use during breastfeeding. In general, these studies showed relatively high levels of SNRIs passed through breast milk, compared with other antidepressants. Because of this, it is recommended that breastfed infants whose mothers take SNRIs be monitored closely. Alternatively, your healthcare provider may recommend another antidepressant that is less likely to be passed through breast milk to the infant.

Talking With Your Healthcare Provider About SNRIs and Breastfeeding

You should talk with your healthcare provider about SNRIs and breastfeeding. This is because everyone's situation is different, and your healthcare provider understands your situation best. Based on what you want and expect (as well as your current health situation), you and your healthcare provider can make a shared decision about SNRIs and breastfeeding in your particular situation.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
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