I Can’t Remember if I Took my Prenatal Vitamin: Understanding the Importance

During pregnancy, maintaining your health and ensuring the baby receives all necessary nutrients becomes a top priority. Among the supplements that play a vital role in this process are prenatal vitamins.

This article discusses the importance of prenatal vitamins, what to do if you can’t remember if you took your prenatal vitamin today, and how to establish a routine to avoid skipping your daily dose.

Why are Prenatal Vitamins Vital During Pregnancy?

Pregnancy demands a greater need for certain nutrients to support the baby’s health and development. Prenatal vitamins contain essential vitamins and minerals that pregnant women might not get enough of in their diets. These include folic acid, iron, and calcium, among others.

Folic acid, specifically, is crucial in the first trimester of pregnancy, as it helps prevent neural tube defects in the baby 1. Iron supports the baby’s growth and development and helps prevent anemia in the pregnant woman 2. Calcium, on the other hand, helps the baby’s bones grow and prevents the mother from losing her own bone density.

I Can’t Remember If I Took My Prenatal Vitamin Today, What Should I Do?

If you can’t remember if you took your prenatal vitamin today, don’t panic. Missing one day is not a big deal in the grand scheme of your entire pregnancy. The most critical thing is not to take a double dose the next day to compensate for the missed one. This could potentially lead to an overdose of certain vitamins and minerals, which can be harmful.

Instead, just carry on with your normal schedule and take your next prenatal vitamin as you would. To prevent this from happening often, consider setting a daily reminder on your phone or keeping your pill bottle in a visible place to act as a reminder.

Establishing a Habit of Taking Prenatal Vitamins Daily

Remembering to take a prenatal vitamin daily can sometimes be a challenge, especially with the numerous changes and tasks that come with being pregnant. Here are some tips to help you establish a consistent habit:

  1. Set a reminder: Make use of smartphone apps or alarms to remind you to take your prenatal vitamin at the same time every day. This can help to establish a routine.
  2. Link it with a daily activity: Take your prenatal vitamin at the same time as a regular daily activity, like brushing your teeth in the morning or having breakfast. Over time, this can help you remember to take your vitamin as part of your daily routine.
  3. Keep your vitamins visible: Store your vitamins in a place where you’ll see them every day, like the kitchen counter or bathroom sink.

By maintaining a regular schedule and creating a habit around taking your prenatal vitamins, you can ensure you’re providing your body and baby with the necessary nutrients throughout your pregnancy.

Dealing with Common Concerns Around Taking Prenatal Vitamins

Some women might have difficulties taking prenatal vitamins daily due to issues such as nausea or forgetfulness. Here’s how to deal with these concerns:

  1. Nausea: If you find that taking your prenatal vitamin makes you feel nauseous, try taking it at a different time of the day. Some women find that taking their vitamin in the evening or right before bed helps lessen nausea. If your nausea persists, it’s worth discussing it with your healthcare provider, as they may be able to recommend an alternative brand or form of prenatal vitamins.
  2. Forgetfulness: As mentioned earlier, setting reminders or pairing your vitamin intake with a daily activity can help with forgetfulness. If you’ve missed a dose, it’s generally safe to just take your next scheduled dose. It’s essential, however, not to double up on doses.

Understanding the Role of Diet in Pregnancy

While prenatal vitamins are a vital part of pregnancy nutrition, they are not a substitute for a healthy diet. The nutrients you get from a varied, balanced diet are the primary source of the vitamins and minerals you and your baby need.

Including foods rich in folic acid (like leafy greens, oranges, and legumes), iron (red meat, poultry, and fortified cereals), and calcium (dairy products and fortified plant-based alternatives) will help supplement your prenatal vitamin intake.


Pregnancy is an exciting and sometimes overwhelming time. If you can’t remember if you took your prenatal vitamin on a particular day, it’s generally not a cause for concern. The crucial point is ensuring that overall, you’re taking your prenatal vitamins regularly and following a balanced diet.

Always consult your healthcare provider if you have any concerns or questions about your prenatal vitamins or nutrition during pregnancy. Remember, every step you take towards maintaining your health is a step towards ensuring the health of your baby.


American Pregnancy Association. (2020). Prenatal Vitamins. Retrieved from https://americanpregnancy.org/healthy-pregnancy/pregnancy-health-wellness/prenatal-vitamins-949/

March of Dimes. (2021). Eating healthy during pregnancy. Retrieved from https://www.marchofdimes.org/pregnancy/eating-healthy-during-pregnancy.aspx

Mayo Clinic. (2021). Prenatal vitamins: Why they matter, how to choose. Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/pregnancy-week-by-week/in-depth/prenatal-vitamins/art-20046945


  1. CDC – Folic Acid Helps Prevent Some Birth Defects
  2. ACOG – Iron Deficiency Anemia


1. Q: Can I take two prenatal vitamins in one day if I forget to take it the previous day?

A: No, it’s generally not recommended to take two prenatal vitamins in one day to make up for a missed dose. Doubling the dose could potentially lead to an overdose of certain vitamins and minerals, which could be harmful. If you miss a dose, just take your next scheduled dose.

2. Q: Are prenatal vitamins necessary if I’m eating a balanced diet?

A: Yes, prenatal vitamins are still recommended even if you maintain a balanced diet. They ensure you’re getting enough of certain vital nutrients like folic acid and iron, which are crucial for your baby’s development and are often difficult to get in adequate amounts from diet alone.

3. Q: Can I take prenatal vitamins even if I’m not pregnant?

A: Yes, some women take prenatal vitamins when trying to conceive, or even as general supplements due to their high levels of certain nutrients. However, because prenatal vitamins contain higher levels of certain nutrients (like iron) compared to standard multivitamins, they may cause side effects like constipation in some people. Always consult your healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen.

4. Q: Can I continue taking prenatal vitamins after giving birth?

A: Yes, it’s often recommended to continue taking prenatal vitamins post-pregnancy, especially if you are breastfeeding. This can help ensure both you and your baby continue to get necessary nutrients.

5. Q: What should I do if I’m experiencing nausea after taking prenatal vitamins?

A: Some women feel nauseous after taking prenatal vitamins, especially on an empty stomach. You could try taking the vitamin with food or just before bedtime. If nausea persists, talk to your healthcare provider, as they may be able to recommend a different brand or form of prenatal vitamin that may be easier on your stomach.

Remember, while this FAQ can provide general information, always consult with your healthcare provider for advice tailored to your specific circumstances.




This post is written and edited by Sandy who is a clinical pharmacist with over 20 years of experience specializing in pre-natal and post-natal care.