What Chicago Parents Need to Know About Using Tylenol During Pregnancy

expecting pregnant

Pregnancy can change your life in more ways than one. You’re preparing to welcome a new family member, but you also may need to change your diet and lifestyle. You start to second-guess everything you eat, drink, take, and do. Even before they are born, you try to do the best for your child.

But sometimes, what’s best isn’t clear. For instance, it wasn’t that long ago pregnant parents were encouraged to smoke for their baby’s health. Or they weren’t discouraged from drinking while pregnant. As prenatal care and medical science evolve, we learn that some things we thought were good for our children…weren’t. And many children suffered the consequences of disinformation. Now, Tylenol (paracetamol, acetaminophen) is coming under scrutiny for potential links to neurodivergence like autism or ADHD in children.

What Research Suggests About Tylenol and Neurodivergence

We first started seeing research into the link between Tylenol and Neurodivergence in 2018. In recent years, more studies have come to light, including one sponsored by the National Institute of Health that further solidifies the data in earlier studies. Researchers found that if a child had high levels of acetaminophen in umbilical cord blood after birth, they were more likely to develop ADHD or autism as they grew older. According to their data, children could be up to three times more likely to develop these developmental or behavioral conditions if there were large amounts of Tylenol in the umbilical blood.

However, other data contradict this and suggest the link isn’t as significant as some studies made it appear. There is enough significance that many courts are allowing every filed Acetaminophen autism ADHD Lawsuit to move forward.

Taking Tylenol While Pregnant

Tylenol is often the more suggested painkiller for pregnant people, heavily preferred to alternatives like Ibuprofen. Even with the above data, medical researchers are not advising against never taking Tylenol when pregnant. Instead, medical experts advise limiting Tylenol and only taking it with the advice of your doctor. The children more likely to develop neurodivergence all had high levels of acetaminophen in their blood at birth; limited amounts should be safe under a clinician’s direction.

Understanding Neurodivergence

Autism, ADHD, and other neurodivergence can influence how your child reacts to the world around them and how they behave. Children with ADHD often struggle with focus and restlessness, while autistic children may have sensory or communication issues. In recent years, Autism has been updated to Autism Spectrum Disorder as doctors come to realize the vast differences between autistic people.

At its core, the term “neurodivergence” simply means “different minds.” It refers to the fact that some brains don’t work in the ‘typical’ fashion. This could be someone whose brain doesn’t regulate chemicals properly, leading to issues like depression and anxiety, or someone with ADHD whose mind struggles to concentrate.

The main thing parents need to know about neurodivergence is that their children may need a customized experience when learning. This can range from special sensory toys to occupational or speech therapy. Parents should weigh advice from medical experts, from adults who live with these conditions, and from their child’s individual experiences. Luckily, Chicago is full of helpful advocacy organizations that can help parents learn more about their child’s diagnosis and connect them with helpful resources and communities.

Why Many Chicago Parents are Hiring Lawyers

As more research has come to light, justices across the United States have determined that many parents have a strong enough case to take manufacturers like Johnson & Johnson to court. There are two main reasons parents decide to file lawsuits: medical professionals, including pharmaceutical companies, have high expectations due to the importance of their products; and medical care and additional costs for a child with a disability can get expensive. 

The more neurodivergence affects your child’s experience, the more they may need extra tools or care. Many neurodivergent children benefit from the presence of Emotional Support Animals, while others require Service Dogs to help with daily tasks. Autistics who struggle with verbal communication may need to learn letterboards and picture boards to express themselves; others may communicate through scripts, aka targeted recitations from things like tv shows or books. Having compensation from the pharmaceutical company responsible helps many parents afford these additional costs without risking their family’s financial situation.

How Chicago Lawyers Help Your Case

If you decide to pursue legal action, you shouldn’t go in alone and unprepared. The US court system can seem like a complex maze waiting for you to get lost. Local attorneys are familiar with court processes and deadlines and can handle the majority of the work. They will also represent you in negotiations and, if needed, in court. Lawyers do their best to ensure you receive maximum compensation from the responsible parties so that you can focus on your child’s needs instead of increasing costs.

If you took Tylenol or a like over-the-counter medication while pregnant and your child has been diagnosed with autism or ADHD, reach out to a qualified Chicago personal injury lawyer today to discuss your options moving forward.