Chest Congestion While Pregnant

Chest congestion caused during pregnancy is normal and should not cause any harm to your growing fetus. While uncomfortable at times, congestion does not usually cause any other problems during pregnancy unless it's associated with another illness. Using remedies to relieve the congestion may offer sufficient relief to make your congestion less irritating.


Hormonal changes cause congestion during pregnancy, according to the March of Dimes. When you are pregnant your blood supply increases from the increase of the hormones estrogen and progesterone, which can cause the nasal membranes to swell. When the nasal passages swell, they dry out easier. Congestion, alone, during pregnancy is usually not a symptom of any other illness, but symptoms such as coughing, a sore throat, aches and pains, or a fever may indicate you have a cold or the flu.


Since nasal congestion during pregnancy is not truly a cold, but a symptom of pregnancy, it is long lasting. Nasal congestion can start as early as the first trimester and continue up until you deliver the baby. As long as you have no other symptoms, you do not need to treat the congestion, but you may feel better if you use solutions to provide some relief from the congestion.


Run a warm-mist humidifier in your room when you sleep at night to increase the moisture in the room and relieve your congestion. Place an extra pillow under your head at night to prevent the mucus from blocking your airways. Increase your fluid intake to assist with moistening your nasal passages. Saline drops are another way to moisten the nasal passages, but do not use decongestants or medicated drops without first consulting with your physician.

Other Considerations

The nasal dryness may also cause your nose to bleed more easily, especially during the winter months when the air is also drier. Keep your head up and apply pressure to the nostrils to stop a nosebleed. Applying an ice pack to the nose narrows the blood vessels and may stop the bleeding.

Is This an Emergency?

If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.
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