Is it Safe for a Pregnant Woman to Get a Flu Vaccine?

During pregnancy, there are many health and safety precautions to take to ensure the safety of both mother and baby. There are a number of specific things to avoid, including certain foods, beauty products, and medication that may cause negative effects to the baby. Pregnant women are also at higher risk of contracting various infections during this time, which opens up a higher possibility of pregnancy complications.

Changes in the woman’s body, especially to the immune system is one the major reasons why pregnant women are more at risk for diseases, as even a simple flu can cause irreversible damage to the woman’s health and the development of her unborn baby. Simple medical precautions like getting a flu shot will prove to be more beneficial than harmful in the long run.

How can a flu shot protect me and my baby?

Many government and medical institutions advise women to get a flu shot during pregnancy. There is no specific trimester on when to get it; the important thing is to do it to avoid the chance of getting sick with the flu and experiencing risks such as premature labor and delivery. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a flu shot may help the mother pass on certain antibodies to her unborn baby, thus giving the child extra protection against other risks factors that can affect health and fetal development. These antibodies may help protect the baby even up to six months after birth.

Side Effects to Expect

It is important to note that flu vaccines given to pregnant women are safe, but they should also expect a bit of side effects or maybe none at all. These side effects are the usual that many people experience like soreness or redness on the vaccinated area, headaches, mild fever, fainting, muscle aches, nausea, and fatigue. There is no cause for worry in case one experiences these side effects. These will usually go away after one or two days. It is important to get the help of doctor if in case these symptoms last longer than they should.

Vaccines to Avoid and Receive During Pregnancy

As mentioned earlier, there is a list of things that pregnant women should avoid to ensure good health during pregnancy. Although flu vaccinations are generally safe, it is best to avoid the nasal spray type. Vaccines that also introduce live viruses into the body should be avoided as well. Aside from staying up-to-date with maternal healthcare, it would also be great to check with your physician regarding other vaccines you need such as Hepatitis B and TDAP vaccinations.