The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that pregnant women get flu vaccinations for their own protection, and to safeguard their unborn babies.
- A woman can get a flu shot at any trimester of pregnancy.
- It will not harm your baby if you get a flu shot while breastfeeding.
- Millions of women have received the flu vaccine during pregnancy.
- The CDC and FDA monitor flu vaccine safety for pregnant women.
- The CDC conducts comprehensive studies to review flu vaccine safety.
- Potential side effects (soreness, redness, or swelling at the injection site; fainting, headache fever, fatigue, muscle aches, or nausea) are mild and resolve quickly.
- The nasal spray vaccine is not recommended for pregnant women.
- If you are allergic to eggs you may not be a candidate for a flu shot.
- Thimerosal-free formulations are available.
- Antibodies from your vaccination are transferred, helping to protect your baby for about six months after birth.
Impact of influenza on mom and baby
You are more likely to get the flu and be severely ill when you are pregnant or have recently given birth, due to changes to the heart, lungs, and immune system. Contracting the flu increases risk of complications in pregnancy, including premature labor and delivery.
If you get the flu right after delivery, you could spread it to your newborn. Flu can be dangerous for even the healthiest babies, causing fever, respiratory problems, dehydration, and other potentially life-threatening symptoms.
Schedule an appointment at Jenkins Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Medicine to learn more about flu vaccine safety. The number is 855-346-8610.
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