If you’re planning to start a family, you will have heard about how prenatal vitamins can help. The question is, how long should you take prenatal vitamins for before getting pregnant? In this post, we find out.
Why Are Prenatal Vitamins So important?
Taking a prenatal vitamin before falling pregnant is good for both you and baby-to-be. By increasing key vitamins and minerals before conception, you give your baby the best possible start in life.
Taking supplements such as folic acid that are often contained in prenatal vitamins also helps reduce the chances of neural tube defects.
So, How Long Should You Take Prenatal Vitamins Before Getting Pregnant?
Sounds good right, so how long should you take prenatal vitamins for before getting pregnant?
While there’s no set time, it’s generally accepted that you should start to take them as soon as you and your partner decided to try for a baby.
The longer you allow your body to “stock up” on vital vitamins and minerals such as iron and folic acid, the better.
Are There Any Disadvantages?
For your health an well-being? There’s not a single disadvantage.
If we did have to point out any disadvantages, it would be around the potential cost.
We mentioned it in one of our pre-pregnancy book reviews (see the full list here) that while prenatal can seem expensive, in the grand scheme of things, they are extremely affordable and will do you the world of good.
While prices are coming down all the time, prenatal vitamins aren’t the cheapest supplements on the markets. Because conception can take months, this means that you could be paying out for a few months worth before even falling pregnant.
That said, the benefit of prenatal vitamins far outweighs any cost concerns that you might have.
As they become more common, many drugstores and supermarkets are releasing their own brand versions which are as good as the big name brands without the cost.
The Bottom Line
While there’s no set guidance on how long should you take prenatal vitamins for before getting pregnant, the general opinion is that you should start taking them once you begin trying for a baby and continue them into your pregnancy.
Ellen Fetters, is a former Children's and Young People's Nursing Practice with an BSc from the University of Sunderland. After completing her SCPHN - HV she then worked as a Health Visitor within the local community.
In 2017 Ellen left nursing to launch Parenting Click, an online parenting resource aimed at creating happier families through better parenting.
She lives with her husband, beautiful baby girl, and two darling dogs. She spends her free time writing, running and learning how to become a better parent.