Is It Safe to Take Armodafinil While Pregnant?

Armodafinil is a generic drug, also available under the trade name Nuvigil. It’s used to treat sleep conditions like narcolepsy, as well as certain other sleep disorders. Armodafinil can be prescribed to help with obstructive sleep apnea as well. Armodafinil may also be used to help people stay awake if they have an abnormal work schedule. It’s not a cure for sleep disorders but, instead, just helps with certain symptoms. It is possible that armodafinil can cause dependence and addiction, and this risk is higher in people with a history of substance use disorder. Common side effects of armodafinil can include headache, dry mouth, nausea and nervousness. Sometimes, armodafinil is used off-label as a way to treat ADHD, chronic fatigue and major depressive disorder. In some ways, armodafinil is believed to act similarly to amphetamine and methylphenidate.

Is it safe to take armodafinil while pregnant? During pregnancy, the FDA classifies armodafinil as a category C drug. This means that it may be unsafe during pregnancy, but there’s not enough clear evidence to definitively say it is safe.

There is an additional issue to consider with regard to armodafinil and pregnancy. There is a certain enzyme in the liver that is used to break down armodafinil. That enzyme is then eliminated through the urine. This enzyme is also responsible for breaking down contraceptives. If a woman takes armodafinil and a hormonal contraceptive, it significantly decreases the levels of the contraceptive in her blood. This lowers the effectiveness of contraceptives and, as a result, women who are prescribed armodafinil are advised to use more than one form of contraceptive.

Will Taking Armodafinil Cause Birth Defects?

It is possible that armodafinil could cause birth defects or complications during pregnancy, but there’s not a lot of scientific evidence available on the topic. Armodafinil is associated with intrauterine growth restriction, as well as spontaneous abortion. In animal studies, developmental toxicity was seen at certain exposure levels. Developmental toxicity can lead to increased skeletal variations and decreased birth weight.

Currently, there is a pregnancy registry that has been established so that researchers can monitor the outcomes of pregnant women using armodafinil. Healthcare providers are encouraged to get their patients to register, and pregnant women can register on their own as well. As with any medication, a doctor will look at the benefits or armodafinil and weigh them against the potential risks during pregnancy to determine if a woman should continue the medication. Because armodafinil can cause withdrawalsymptoms, it’s important not to stop it without speaking with a healthcare provider first. Withdrawal symptoms can cause pregnancy complications and can be dangerous for a baby as well.

Alternatives to Taking Armodafinil While Pregnant

Since there can be risks to a fetus if a pregnant woman uses armodafinil, some women may look for alternatives. The risks of using a medication like armodafinil can be particularly high if it’s used during the first trimester when the majority of the baby’s development is happening. For example, some physicians might recommend taking high doses of certain vitamins and minerals like calcium, magnesium, and choline.

There are also certain other nutrients that some doctors feel are helpful in treating symptoms of narcolepsy. Some of these include coenzyme Q-10, omega-3 fatty acids, B-vitamins, and L-tyrosine among others. Some herbal supplements may be used to help stimulate people during daytime hours and alleviate some symptoms of narcolepsy. While alternatives to taking armodafinil while pregnant may be available, don’t try to self-medicate. Certain herbs and even certain vitamins may not be advisable during pregnancy or may have interactions with other medicines a pregnant woman can take. A healthcare provider can work with you to determine options that will be safe.

Lifestyle changes might be helpful in addition to whatever protocol a healthcare provider recommends. For example, meditation or changing sleep routines or any routines leading up to bedtime may be helpful during pregnancy.

The Recovery Village works with people to help them follow personalized addiction treatment paths, and rebuild their lives starting from a strong foundation. Contact our compassionate team for more information.

  • Visit the following websites to learn about The Recovery Village’s network of rehabilitation facilities. Call today for admissions. Each center is ready to help people learn how to cope with their Ambien addiction and uncover the root causes for their substance use disorder.
  • Orlando Recovery Center: A premier rehabilitation facility in Orlando, Florida that helps individuals recover from addiction and substance use disorders. The center also offers the opportunity to treat co-occurring disorders.
  • The Recovery Village Columbus: Located in Ohio, this facility provides inpatient, outpatient and aftercare treatment for people looking to begin detox. The center provides individualized plans to help patients through recovery while addressing their unique co-occurring disorders or any setbacks that may happen during recovery.
  • The Recovery Village Palmer Lake: In Colorado, this facility offers inpatient, outpatient and intensive outpatient treatment for individuals looking to kick-start their journey to recovery.
  • The Recovery Village Ridgefield: Located right in southern Washington, this facility provides patients with outpatient and aftercare programs. Just 20 minutes outside of Portland, this facility assists individuals who are ready to begin treatment.
  • The Recovery Village: In Umatilla, Florida, this is a rehabilitation facility that provides resources for individuals seeking drug and alcohol treatment. There are inpatient, outpatient, intensive outpatient and partial hospitalization treatment programs available for those suffering from Ambien addiction.
  • IAFF Center of Excellence: Specializes in assisting firefighters who struggle with behavioral health problems and addiction. Members can enter the recovery process sooner so they can return back to work as quickly as possible. Inpatient, partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient programs are all available at this facility, where patients can address their Ambien addiction in a safe, supportive environment.
  • Denver Mental Health & Counseling: Denver Mental Health and Counseling by The Recovery Village is a physician-led outpatient center specializing in evidence-based addiction and mental health treatments, offering services such as TMS, IOP, and personalized care for both ongoing and new patients, dedicated to fostering long-term recovery and overall well-being.
  • The Recovery Village Palm Beach at Baptist Health: The Recovery Village Palm Beach at Baptist Health is a premier physician-led treatment center in South Florida, offering a comprehensive spectrum of services from medical detox to outpatient programs for alcohol, drug, and co-occurring mental health conditions, with a commitment to rejuvenating lives, families, and communities, and facilitating same-day admissions.
  • The Recovery Village Atlanta: Located in Roswell just outside downtown Atlanta, is a 62-bed physician-led treatment facility offering a comprehensive range of services, from medical detox to outpatient care, specializing in alcohol, drug, and co-occurring mental health conditions, dedicated to transforming lives, families, and communities throughout Georgia.
  • The Recovery Village Kansas City: The Recovery Village Kansas City, an 80-bed facility in Raytown just 10 miles from downtown, offers a comprehensive range of evidence-based treatments for addiction and mental health conditions, overseen by physician leaders, and is dedicated to revitalizing lives, families, and communities throughout the Midwest.
  • The Recovery Village Cherry Hill at Cooper Health: The Recovery Village Cherry Hill at Cooper, situated just 20 minutes from Philadelphia, is a leading rehab facility in South Jersey providing comprehensive, evidence-based addiction and mental health treatments, ranging from medical detox to teletherapy, with a dedicated team committed to guiding adults on their path to lifelong recovery.
Medical Disclaimer

The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers.