Folic Acid Tablets Before Pregnancy

Are you planning to conceive? You are on the right path to expand your family. As you make your pregnancy plan, you need to take proper care of yourself, from your diet to exercising and sleeping. Taking care of your diet is essential for you to get all the nutritional elements. Folic acid is one the nutrients you should take as you make your pregnancy plan. 

Folic acid is a type of vitamin, vitamin B9 that you can get through foods or take as tablets. You should take it 2-3 months before you get pregnant. Its intake facilitates building up your body for better baby protection against neural tube defects, like spina bifida. If you get pregnant in your try, you should start taking folic acid and keep its intake till 12 weeks of pregnancy. Here have a look at all associated points about taking folic acid before pregnancy. 

Why take folic acid before pregnancy?

The presence of enough folic acid in your body before pregnancy lowers the risk of having neural defects to your baby by 70%. Neural defects relate to spinal cord or brain problems and spina bifida. It is a rare issue. However, it can make your future baby to have an extensive array of problems like:

  • Bowel and bladder problems 
  • Movement issues 
  • Learning difficulties


What is the right dosage of folic acid for me while trying to conceive? 

Medical experts advise females to take 400mcg folic acid a day 2-3 months before getting pregnant. As a mom-to-be female, you can buy this prenatal supplement from chemist stores, health food shops, and supermarkets. 

In addition, folic acid is available in multivitamin tablets recommended by your doctor. If you take such tablets on your behalf, make sure it has no vitamin A. higher dosage of vitamin A can lead your baby to have developmental issues in the first trimester of your pregnancy. You can get folic acid from foods like:

  • Spinach 
  • Peas
  • Broccoli
  • Chickpeas 
  • Brussels sprouts 
  • Asparagus 
  • Fortified breakfast cereals 


When do you need a higher dosage of folic acid?

As mentioned above, you should take 400mcg folic acid a day for 2-3 months. However, your doctor can recommend a higher dosage of folic acid tablets if your pregnancy has a higher risk of neural tube defects. The higher dosage could be 5mg a day. You need a higher dosage of folic acid if you or your partner have:

  • Diabetes 
  • Neural tube defect 
  • A previous pregnancy affected by a neural tube defect
  • Epilepsy 
  • A family history of neural tube defects 
  • A heavy drinker


Where can I get folic acid?

Folic acid is present in numerous preconception vitamins that are not harmful, but are expensive. You should buy separate folic acid tablets to lower your medication cost. While taking supplements or multivitamin tablets, you need to assure yourself they do not contain vitamin A. You can get pre-pregnancy vitamins and folic acid of normal dosages from a local chemist or health food shop. However, you need to show your doctor’s prescription before buying folic acid tablets of higher dosage, like 5mg. 

What should I do for folic acid intake if I am already pregnant?

You do not need to worry, as the risk associated with neural tube defects is small. If you are already pregnant, you can start taking folic acid from now and keep its intake till 12 weeks of your pregnancy. Talking to your doctor will help you know the right dosage of folic acid you should take after getting pregnant.     

I haven’t been taking folic acid while I have been trying to conceive? What should I do?

You should take folic acid for 2-3 months before you start working on your pregnancy plan. If you are not taking it while trying to get pregnant, you need not to worry. You can start taking this vitamin now. Talk to your doctor if you have any concerns. 

At FSIVF Centre, our doctors offer all the requisite information, advice, and support to females willing to be moms. By visiting our clinic, you can get your concerns resolved before getting pregnant. We take utmost care of our patients like you.