Monday, April 4, 2011

Is Colloidal Silver Safe to Use During Pregnancy?

I’ve heard from dozens of women over the past 15 years who have told me they used colloidal silver during pregnancy – infrequently and in small amounts -- with no adverse effects whatsoever, only benefits.

And they’ve given birth to healthy, happy, beautiful bouncing babies.

Yet warnings against using colloidal silver during pregnancy persist. And to make matters worse, there are no significant clinical studies to demonstrate – one way or the other – whether colloidal silver is safe to take during pregnancy.

Here’s what I’ve learned, at this point…

To my knowledge, there have been no major clinical studies whatsoever exploring the safety of using colloidal silver during human pregnancy.

This means there is no medical evidence for, or against, the use of colloidal silver during pregnancy.

There is however, plenty of anecdotal evidence of women who have taken colloidal silver during pregnancy without side effects or harm to the developing baby.

But First: Be Careful of Unsubstantiated Assertions

One colloidal silver vendor states in an online article, “Studies show that colloidal silver administered during pregnancy helps the baby's healthy development, not to mention that it also makes delivery and post-delivery recovery a lot easier.”

The only problem with that assertion is that I can’t find a single study documenting it. Not one. And he doesn’t reference any studies, either, which in my opinion is an egregious error considering the force of his statement.

On the other hand, on the web site of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center there’s a section on Integrative Medicine which states, “Pregnant women should not consume colloidal silver as it can cause developmental abnormalities in the fetus (1).”

They then cite a study by M.C. Fung and D.L. Bowen, “Silver Products for Medical Indications: Risk-Benefit Assessment,” published in the Journal of Toxicology, Clinical Toxicology back in 1996.

But Fung and Bowen didn’t actually conduct a study on colloidal silver and pregnant women. Instead, they merely reviewed the results of another study, and then stated, based upon that review:

There is a potential risk for the developing fetus when pregnant women use silver products. A case control epidemiology study was conducted by Aschengrau et al. among women who delivered infants from 1977 to 1980 in a Massachusetts hospital.

Trace element levels of public water were analyzed from the communities in which the women resided during pregnancy. The relationship between community drinking water quality and the occurrence of late adverse pregnancy outcomes was examined.

After adjustment for confounding factors, the results suggested some association between maternal exposures to 0.001 mglL of silver in the drinking water (1/100 of the EPA standard) and some increase in fetal developmental anomalies (ear, face, and neck).

As the authors recognized, there are inferential limitations to epidemiologic studies. Further research is needed to explore these findings.

To be truthful with you, this means basically nothing.

If you read it carefully, you’ll note that Fung and Bowen’s assessment of the study is that there is “potential risk” for the developing fetus when pregnant women use silver products.

Then they go on to describe a study that was NOT about pregnant women using silver products at all!

To the best I can tell, not a single woman in the study was using colloidal silver or any other silver-based product.

Instead, the study was about “the relationship between community drinking water quality and the occurrence of late adverse pregnancy outcomes.”

So, apparently no women in the study were taking colloidal silver. The researchers apparently looked into the idea that “trace element levels of public water” might have had some effect on the “adverse pregnancy outcomes.”

In other words, the study was trying to determine whether or not there was anything in the community drinking water that could have negatively affected the pregnancies of these women.

And one of the things the researchers found after adjusting their findings “for confounding factors,” was a “suggestion” that there might be “some association” between the exposure of small amounts of silver in the drinking water and “some increase” in fetal developmental anomalies.”

Wow…conclusive findings, huh?

This “suggestion” was apparently never followed up on with subsequent studies.

To me, this indicates that not much weight was given to the conclusions drawn by the original researchers due to the skimpiness and speculative nature of the evidence they presented.

The authors themselves apparently noted “there are inferential limitations to epidemiologic studies,” meaning, I suppose, there were a lot of inferences drawn from the study findings.

Of course, you have to be very careful with inferences. After all, inferences are not science. And without much direct causal evidence (much less proof), inferences can border on conjecture and even outright guesswork.

No Additional Studies for 50 Years

Going back 50 years, I can’t find a single additional study demonstrating adverse effects from silver usage during pregnancy.

The National Institutes of Health has a generally negative “backgrounder” report on the use of colloidal silver, called simply “Colloidal Silver Products.” But regarding pregnancy the backgrounder report only states:

If you are pregnant or nursing a child, or if you are considering giving a child a dietary supplement, it is especially important to consult your health care provider.

Supplements can act like drugs in the body, and many have not been tested in pregnant women, nursing mothers, or children.

I quite agree with that statement. In my opinion, a good naturopath should be individually consulted for advice when deciding whether or not to use ANY kind of nutritional supplement during pregnancy.

Kurt Grange, Ph.D., N.D., Nutritional Biophysiologist, noted author and lecturer states:

"Colloidal silver appears to be safe for children and pregnant and nursing women.

It is tasteless, odorless, contains no free radicals, is harmless to human enzymes and has no adverse reactions with medications.

Taken internally, it may improve digestion, help prevent colds, flu and all organism-caused diseases. It can be used as a douche, atomized, nebulized or inhaled.

Applied externally, it has been shown to help with things such as skin abrasions and burns (including sun burn).

It can also be dropped into the eyes and ears to help the body overcome infection."

Other Sources

Checking other sources, I find that Wikipedia’s article on “Silver in Medicine” says nothing about the use of colloidal silver during pregnancy.

Neither does Dr. Ray Sahelian, M.D., in his online article “Colloidal silver supplement health benefit information, side effects, risks and research”.

Even the horrifically biased Quackwatch.com article on colloidal silver, called “Colloidal Silver: Risk Without Benefit,” mentions nothing about any potential risk of using colloidal silver while pregnant –

-- which, I would assume if such information actually existed, they would shout it from the rooftops, considering their hyperbolic and irrational stance against all nutritional supplements and natural health care regimens.

NTP Study: No Development Effects Or Systemic Toxicity Found in Study of Pregnant Rats

According to an EPA analysis of a National Toxicology Program study on pregnant rats that were tube-fed silver:

“In a developmental toxicity study of pregnant rats conducted in 2002 by the National Toxicology Program (NTP), silver acetate was administered by gavage [tube-feeding – ED] on days 6-19 of gestation.

No developmental effects were reported at doses up to 100 mg/kg…

…More importantly, the results from this study did not demonstrate an increased susceptibility of offspring, nor did it demonstrate systemic toxicity.”

-- Environmental Protection Agency, Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 110 / Wednesday, June 10, 2009 / Rules and Regulations

So, silver didn’t appear to harm the development of baby rats, even though it was being tube-fed directly into the mother rats during gestation.

Err On The Side of Caution

Personally, I always prefer to err on the side of caution and warn women not to take colloidal silver when pregnant, unless it is absolutely necessary –

-- and then only under the supervision of their health care practitioner, as there are no studies to demonstrate what happens when the growing fetus is exposed to silver, good or bad.

But from what many female readers of my newly updated 547-page book
The Ultimate Colloidal Silver Manual have told me over the past 16 years, it’s abundantly clear to me that a LOT of pregnant women take small amounts of colloidal silver during pregnancy, to good effect.

They claim it helps with morning sickness, urinary tract infections, vaginal candida yeast infections and also helps prevent colds, flu and other upper respiratory infections from taking hold.

So far, in all of these years, none of the women I’ve spoken to have said there was any apparent harm to the newborn afterwards.

Some of these women took small amounts daily (i.e., several eye-droppers full, several times a day) during the entire course of their pregnancy. Some took it only when needed to stop infection during the course of the pregnancy.

Here are some real-life examples from members of the Colloidal Silver Secrets Group on Facebook:

Real-Life Testimonials: What Women Who Have Used Colloidal Silver During Pregnancy Have to Say…

[Testimonials are subjective accounts of people’s personal experiences. They are not proof of safety or effectiveness. These real-life testimonials are included solely for informational purposes, and should not be interpreted as medical advice or guidance. Always check with a trusted medical practitioner before using colloidal silver.]

I saw this post from a member of the Colloidal Silver Secrets Group on Facebook (join, here), which I think is very interesting:

“My daughter started ingesting colloidal silver about a year before her pregnancy.

She took about an ounce a day. And she deliberately upped her dose when she found out she was pregnant to 1 cup, or more, per day, plus external usage as needed. I don’t know the ppm.

She had a home birth, along with a midwife. The home birth was very successful, no medical intervention.

Baby scored a 10 on the Apgar, was almost 8lbs, and very pink and healthy.

My daughter also used plenty of colloidal silver in the water of the birthing pool, and after the birth of the baby for the cord, for cleaning all towels and objects used in the birth, and later for the treatment of the baby's umbilical area, and for washing the baby.

She continues to use colloidal silver for the baby, from umbilical care to skin rashes. It works like a charm.

She also used it for personal care and cleaning, and says it worked WONDERS for hemorrhoids, and for nipple care between nursings. She would even soak her breast pads in it.

The baby ingested it as well from day 1, and was used in ears, nose, eyes and when he started teething would freeze wash cloths dipped in cs for the baby to sooth his gums.

The only side effect was health, clear skin, no colds, no illness, fast healing.”

-- J-A. W., Canada

Using a cup of colloidal silver per day on an ongoing basis is a pretty strong dose, even for an adult. Most colloidal silver products recommend no more than an ounce a day for adults.

What has to be remembered her is that the growing baby is receiving a good portion of this dosage. I must admit, from a personal standpoint, taking such a relatively large amount of colloidal silver on a daily basis while pregnant would really bother me.

Nevertheless, this is a bona-fide testimonial from a woman who did exactly that, and her baby apparently turned out great. Additionally, I’d never heard that colloidal silver is helpful with hemorrhoids. I haven’t had hemorrhoids for many years, but that’s certainly something I’ll have to try if I ever have them again!

Here’s another comment from a mother of three children, ages 11, 4 and 2:

“I used CS specifically for PUPPS [intense, hive-like rashes – ED] and got almost instant relief.

I also took it orally whenever I felt like I was coming down with something. I took a teaspoon at a time, three times a day, for about a week. This happened at least five different times throughout the course of the pregnancy.

And, I never came down with anything either. I would take it as soon as I felt anything, sore throat, a little achy, that "sick"-feeling, headache etc.

When taking it orally I did have to mix it in something strong tasting because I had morning sickness that would last all day, and the metallic taste would make me gag because I seemed to be hypersensitive to it while pregnant.

For extra sanitation, I would also use it in my laundry whenever I washed clothes. I washed all my baby's clothes in the homemade laundry soap with colloidal silver in it.

I used it in the hospital instead of their soaps with all the chemicals in it. I used it on my nipples in the hospital right before baby would nurse because I have heard there is a risk of MRSA in hospitals.

I used it for so many different things all the way through, never had any ill effects other than the increased sensitivity to the taste.”

-- A.D.

And here’s one from a mom who had tested positive for Strep at 18 weeks:

“I was GBS (Group B Strep) positive at 18 weeks pregnant. This is common in a lot of pregnancies. The result is that they give antibiotics during delivery.

At the advice of a friend, I decided to take 10 ml of colloidal silver [about 1/3 ounce – ED] and cranberry juice. I took it before bed every night and at 28 weeks tested negative.

At 37 weeks they routinely tested again and it was still negative. My Midwife was surprised because normally if you test positive anytime during your pregnancy, you will almost always be positive at delivery.

I continued to take the colloidal silver and some cranberry juice until 40 weeks. Since then, I gave birth to a healthy baby boy and now use it on his bottom. I put it in a spray bottle and use it during diaper changes.”

-- M.C.

Here’s another one from a happy mom who used colloidal silver to ward off infections during pregnancy:

“I used colloidal silver during my entire pregnancy. I only took it when I felt ill (not pregnancy related illness, but colds, flu, etc.).

I usually drank about 1-2 oz. about 3-5 times per day until I felt better. I gargled with the colloidal silver when my throat hurt before I swallowed it.

I also put some colloidal silver in a nasal spray bottle and sprayed it up my nose to cure a very painful sinus infection.

My baby was born perfectly healthy (8 lb. 5 oz.). I have also given the baby colloidal silver since birth for various illnesses including pink eye.

I also gave a bottle of colloidal silver to another friend who had a very bad case of mastitis. She took it for about 3 days and was able to cure the mastitis and continue nursing for almost a year after.”

I also gave some colloidal silver to a friend who was suffering with a bad case of shingles.

I gave her colloidal silver in combination with olive leaf extract and her shingles and pain disappeared in days. She told me that her Shingles usually last 6-8 wks.

The outbreak that was inside her mouth healed within 12 hrs. She swished the colloidal silver around in her mouth for 1 min. before swallowing it.

She drank 1-2 oz. about 5-7 times per day for 3 days along with about 1 TBL. of olive leaf extract.

I have the Micro-Particle Colloidal Silver Generator. I make a mixture combining the Micro-Particle Colloidal Silver using distilled water only for 3 hrs.

Then I make a separate batch using distilled water with 4-5 drops of a salt/saline mixture for about 30-45 min. when both batches are done, I pour 1/2 of each type into two amber bottles and mix them together.”

-- T.R.B., Montgomery, TX

And here’s one from Aubrey M., who used colloidal silver for bronchitis, during her third month of pregnancy:

“I used colloidal silver for bronchitis during my 3rd month of pregnancy. I used a brand called Sovereign Silver in a 4 oz spray bottle and was over the bronchitis in about 4 days!

That's incredible for me because I usually take a long time to get over illnesses as a result of immune lowering drugs I used to have to take.

I only ‘splurge’ on silver when I get sick, but if I had the money, I would have bought and taken it throughout my pregnancy.

I also used colloidal silver on my son's eyes when he was 2 months old. His tear ducts were clogged and after crying his eyes would sometimes get gunky from the ducts becoming infected.

I would just put a drop of silver or breast milk, usually both, into each eye. After that happened just a few times, it has cleared up permanently.

I would HIGHLY recommend silver use during pregnancy, but only high-quality silver stored properly in a glass container.

Not only do I believe it can help the developing fetus, but in my experience it helps keep the mother from getting sick, which is the last thing you want during pregnancy!

Your health affects your baby's health and silver is the most effective immune booster I've ever used! I've gotten over illnesses in record time using it and I've never had any side effects whatsoever. It is truly miraculous.

I guess I should mention my son is extremely healthy! I'm constantly getting remarks on how healthy he is/looks. He is almost 5 months and hasn't been sick yet, even though he has been around numerous sick family members.”

-- Aubrey M.

And here’s another one, from Z.C. in San Antonio, TX, who used colloidal silver periodically during the course of her pregnancy, to stop sore throats and infections:

“I’m a mother that used colloidal silver during my most recent pregnancy.

Our baby boy will be 8 months tomorrow, but even when I was unaware that I was pregnant, I was using colloidal silver to prevent sickness as we were moving from one state in the Midwest to the East Coast.

That meant many hotel stays since we included a vacation to Mount Rushmore in our move. Because we had contracted strep on a previous move, from all of the public exposure and swimming pools at hotels, I didn't want us to get in a new house and come down with illness again.

So we used colloidal silver throat spray and my entire family was taking one or two sprays each day depending on age.

I only used it whenever I felt ‘under the weather’ or extra tired. I would use it until I was feeling that I was ‘out of the woods,’ so to speak.

I did very well, and our baby boy has been perfectly normal. He was born with hyposadeous, but that is common in a significant percentage of all male babies. All other development is totally on target and he is precious.

And for the record, I am 43 and this was my eighth child.”

-- Z.C., San Antonio, TX

Here’s one from Lynn in Arizona, whose sister used colloidal silver during pregnancy:

“My sister drank an ounce or so of colloidal silver each day during the last three months of her pregnancy, and the baby's doing terrific.

She was very cautious after finding out during the fourth month of pregnancy that the baby had only one good kidney due to a congenital defect. But during the sixth month she began using small amounts of colloidal silver to help boost immunity and prevent colds.

My sister had no morning sickness during the time she used colloidal silver. She sprayed colloidal silver on the food she consumed while pregnant. She even continues to use colloidal silver in the wash when washing the baby's clothing, and sprays her crib bedding to prevent microbial contamination.

I also used colloidal silver on my sister's stitches, and through her nursing stages. We applied it to her skin and soaked the baby's pacifiers in colloidal silver.

It kept away infection and aided the baby against diaper rash when put on her skin.”

-- Lynn, Phoenix, AZ

Here’s another one, from Kristi M.:

I used C.S. during pregnancy with no problems.

If I felt any type of sickness coming on, cold or flu, I would take anywhere from 20-40ppm -(a good swig @ 2 Tablespoons) 3-4 times per day.

I truly felt it kept me healthy. My daughter was born fine, and I nursed her with no complications.

More recently, my daughter, now 5, has had problems with asthma. We have been using colloidal silver in her nebulizer machine at 40 ppm and have had better results than the prescribed medicine. It seems to improve breathing immediately.

-- Kristi M.

And here’s another success story from Valerie in Tallahassee, Alabama:

“I have been using collodial silver for 5 years now. I use it as an immunity booster. I continued to use it while I was pregnant.

I took it orally (20 ppm) 1 tsp about 3 times per week. I had no complications at all with my pregnancy. I had no morning sickness. I felt great the whole time.

I delivered a healthy big baby girl. She weighed 8 lbs. 9 oz…I would recommend it to anyone!”

-- Valerie C., Tallahassee, AL

Here’s another one, from a colloidal silver user in Bogota, Columbia:

“I got pregnant at age 40. During my third month of pregnancy I got the flu, and used 13 ppm colloidal silver at the rate of one ounce, 8 times a day, for about three 3 days.

When I was about eight months pregnant, I used 13 ppm colloidal silver to stop a kidney infection.

I used the following regimen for the infection: one ounce at 8:00 am, one ounce at 8:05 am, one ounce at 8:10 am, stopped, and then repeated the same dosage regimen each hour for nine hours, over a three day period. After that the doctor tested and everything was perfect. The infection was gone.

I also used colloidal silver on my baby. When she was three to six months old, I used it for stomach infections at the rate of 20 drops each hour until diarrhea stops - approximately 4 to 8 hours later.

When she was between six months and three years old, I used 1/2 ounce of 13 ppm colloidal silver each hour, for up to two days for infections and flu. After three years old, I used one ounce of 13 ppm each hour for infections and flu, for several days.

My daughter is seven years old now, and perfectly healthy. In fact, her growing process curve is in the 95 percentile.”

-- Raquel C., Bogota, Columbia

And finally, this one from Candace, who didn’t use colloidal silver during pregnancy, but used it directly afterwards in her newborn children’s eyes to heal infected clogged tear ducts:

“I did not use the colloidal silver during my pregnancy. However I thought you might like this info anyway, since its baby related.

All of my babies had a clogged tear duct when born. On the first child I massaged and massaged and it didn't work.

So for the second two children I used colloidal silver on the problem eye. I would drop 3 or 4 drops right at the tear duct of the eye and lightly massage, then would add 2 more drops after massaging. I would repeat that process on the tear duct 2-3 times a day.

After two and a half days the infection/clog was gone. I could see the goo finally purging.

Also the red irritation around the eye healed as well. Both babies are doing great. I had tremendous results with this. I used a 12 ppm colloidal silver product.”

-- Candace, Connecticut


Many Other Women Have Successfully
Used Colloidal Silver During Pregnancy

I’ve spoken with many other women who have used colloidal silver during pregnancy, most of whom took only small amounts of colloidal silver on an as needed basis.

All of them have told me the colloidal silver usage was extremely beneficial in helping keep them well. And not one of them ever experienced any harm to their babies.

So I’m not sure what to make of all of this conflicting information from health authorities, with some saying it’s safe to take colloidal silver, and others saying it’s not, and basically none of them having any solid clinical evidence to back up their claims.

This means I’ll have to leave it up to you, dear reader, to draw your own conclusions, and make your own risk-reward-benefits decision on this issue. Always seek the advice of your experienced health care practitioner, particularly if you’re pregnant.

If I come across new information on this topic – good or bad -- rest assured I’ll post it as soon as it becomes available to me.

You may find some additional helpful information from the following two articles:

At Tale of Two Pregnancies

Is Colloidal Silver Toxic to Human Sperm or Eggs, or Harmful to Human Reproduction?

Special note to women readers:

If you’ve had any personal experience with the use of colloidal silver while pregnant – positive or negative -- please let me know by posting your experience to the Wall of the Colloidal Silver Secrets Group on Facebook.

It will be extremely helpful, as this is one of the most frequently asked questions I get from women who are new to colloidal silver usage.

Important Note: Nothing in this article should be construed as prescriptive in nature. It is strictly journalistic. You should always consult with an experienced health care professional before using any nutritional supplement during pregnancy, or when you have a potentially serious health issue. Remember, the baby is the most important thing.

Helpful Links:

Video: Learn How to Make Micro-Particle Colloidal Silver

.999 Fine Pure Silver Wire for Making Colloidal Silver

Get Your FREE Colloidal Silver “Safe Dosage” Report

Join the Colloidal Silver Secrets Group on Facebook

The New Micro-Particle Colloidal Silver Generator

Subscribe to the Colloidal Silver Secrets Ezine

Make Your Own Colloidal Silver Inexpensively

Real-Life Colloidal Silver Success Stories

Colloidal Silver Update (News & Views)

The Ultimate Colloidal Silver Manual

The Colloidal Silver Secrets Video

Colloidal Silver Kills Viruses

Colloidal Silver Cures MRSA

Colloidal Silver Secrets blog

Meet Steve Barwick


Important Note and Disclaimer: The contents of this Ezine have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Information conveyed herein is from sources deemed to be accurate and reliable, but no guarantee can be made in regards to the accuracy and reliability thereof. The author, Steve Barwick, is a natural health journalist with over 30 years of experience writing professionally about natural health topics. He is not a doctor. Therefore, nothing stated in this Ezine should be construed as prescriptive in nature, nor is any part of this Ezine meant to be considered a substitute for professional medical advice. Nothing reported herein is intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. The author is simply reporting what he has learned during the past 17 years of journalistic research into colloidal silver and its usage. Therefore, the information and data presented should be considered for informational purposes only, and approached with caution. Readers should verify for themselves, and to their own satisfaction, from other knowledgeable sources such as their doctor, the accuracy and reliability of all reports, ideas, conclusions, comments and opinions stated herein. All important health care decisions should be made under the guidance and direction of a legitimate, knowledgeable and experienced health care professional. Readers are solely responsible for their choices. The author and publisher disclaim responsibility or liability for any loss or hardship that may be incurred as a result of the use or application of any information included in this Ezine.

2 comments:

Bob Carlton said...

Colloidal silver is really an effective one. I have try it for itchy spots of my skin before.

Gabi said...

Awesome information Steve. I have been studying my Master of Clinical Science (Complementary Medicine) for seven years now and have had to read many research articles during this time. Its great to get an honest analysis of all these reports.Research is potentially very biased and you have saved me alot of time doing the analysis myself. I just want to take some colloidal silver! I have taken other herbs such as Withania throughout two pregnancies without any adverse effects, yet there are books which state it is dangerous during pregnancy. Someone needs to re-do the pregnancy research! Thanks again. Gabi