If you talk to your friends about fertility or visit online fertility message boards, you may have heard about Robitussin being linked to fertility. It may sound odd at first, but Robitussin contains an active ingredient that can help couples who are trying to conceive.
People link the name “Robitussin” with “cough syrup,” but it isn’t necessarily Robitussin that helps with fertility. It is the active ingredient, guaifenesin. Any cough medicine that contains guaifenesin works in the same way. Therefore, buying a Robitussin product that does not contain guaifenesin will not work for fertility purposes. You want to look for Robitussin that is an expectorant, not a decongestant.
Why it Works
Guaifenesin is an expectorant, meaning it will loosen and thin mucus, according to the Fertility Community website. Mucus in your throat is not the only mucus guaifenesin works on. It may thin your cervical mucus as well. This will help sperm reach their destination. If you are having fertility problems not related to your cervical mucus, then Robitussin or guaifenesin will not help.
When Cervical Mucus is Too Thick
Your doctor can tell you if she thinks your cervical mucus is too thick. She can check your mucus one to two days before you ovulate and after you have had intercourse. Your doctor will take a sample of your cervical mucus and analyze it for live sperm and for the quality of the mucus. The mucus should be stretchy and have live sperm swimming in it.
How Much to Take
Women since 1982 have been taking 2 tsp. of Robitussin three times a day. You can take up to 4 tsp. a day if your mucus still appears thick. Take the Robitussin with a full glass of water, and drink fluids throughout the day to produce mucus. Start taking Robitussin five days before you think you are going to ovulate, and continue up through ovulation day, recommends the Fertility Plus website.
Talk to Your Doctor
You should discuss taking any medication with your doctor first. Guaifenesin has some side effects, such as diarrhea, dizziness, hives, headache, nausea and skin rash. These side effects are not common, but when you are trying to conceive, you need to be careful. Even substances that you think are harmless could be harmful to you or to your unborn baby, according to the Fertility Community website.
- measuring cough medicine image by Larry Allen from Fotolia.com