While pregnant you think of the health of you and your baby. Immunizations are very important part to that. There is a reduction in disease and death among woman vaccinated against diseases that are preventable by vaccinations. There is no evidence of dangers to the fetus with pregnant woman getting vaccinated with bacterial vaccines, inactivated virus, or toxoids. Live vaccines pose a danger to fetuses if given to pregnant women.
Vaccines Usually Recommended While Pregnant
Two vaccines that are usually recommended while pregnant are influenza (flu vaccine) and Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis). Due to higher risks associated with pregnant women and influenza, you should get inactivated influenza vaccine. If you have given birth and are breastfeeding you can get the inactivated or the live vaccine. Pregnant woman should not receive live vaccines. Having the vaccine can help protect the baby from getting the flu from the mother after birth. Millions of women that are pregnant have been given the influenza vaccine for 45 years. For several years the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists have recommended the influenza vaccine for woman that are pregnant.
Safety with Vaccinations
Prior to receiving any vaccine your doctor needs to know the vaccine’s immunogenic material. Vaccines that are live, such as MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella) and the flu vaccine that is delivered nasally are not recommended while pregnant. Vaccines that have virus like particles, nonviable antigens, or components that are noninfectious but immunogenic of bacteria are thought of as safe for pregnant women. These include the flu shot that is injected and Tdap vaccine.
Miscarriages and the recommended vaccines are not linked. Newborns may have prevention of disease by the antibodies transferring to the fetus. This gives the baby protection from these diseases before they are old enough to receive the vaccinations themselves. Some women decide against vaccines while they are pregnant. If this is the case, postpartum immunizations are offered. Taking the Tdap vaccination after giving birth if you declined while pregnant, helps prevent you from passing pertussis to the baby.
Vaccinations when pregnant, do you need it?
• Hepatitis A (HepA) – Maybe, if there are specific risks for the hepatitis A virus. This is safe when pregnant.
• Hepatitis B (HepB) – This vaccine is also a maybe if there are specific risks for this virus. This is safe to receive while pregnant.
• Human papillomavirus (HPV) – No, this is not recommended while you are pregnant. If you receive this prior to your knowledge of your pregnancy, there is no need for concern. This vaccine is given in three doses, if you have started before getting pregnant, wait until after the pregnancy to finish.
• Influenza (inactivated) – Yes, this vaccination should be received if pregnant during the fall or winter, usually between beginning of October until the end of March. This vaccine is safe during pregnancy.
• Influenza (LAIV) – No, this vaccine should never be given to women that are pregnant.
• Measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) – No, if pregnant a woman should not receive this vaccine. However, if you received this while pregnant these is no need for concern. If you receive this vaccine, you need to avoid getting pregnant for at least 28 days following the vaccination.
• Meningococcal (MCV4, MPSV4) – Maybe, if you have one of many health conditions, if your age is between 19-21 and are in your first year of college and reside in a residential hall. This vaccine is safe to get while pregnant.
• Pneumococcal (PCV13, PPSV23) – Maybe, if there is a specific danger for contracting pneumococcal disease. One of these dangers is, diabetes. Receiving this vaccine is safe if you are pregnant.
• Tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (Tdap, Td) Yes, you should receive this vaccine of you are pregnant. During each of your pregnancies in the third trimester, preferably. A booster should be received every ten years.
• Varicella (chickenpox) (VAR) – No, this vaccination is not recommended while pregnant. If you received this vaccine and you are pregnant, there is no need to worry. If possible, you should be vaccinated prior to getting pregnant.
Before receiving any vaccinations, make sure your doctor explains all the benefits and risks. In the end, you are the one that decides if you want them or not.
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