Vaccines are an essential component of preventive health care, providing your body with a defense against harmful bacteria and viruses. But you may not realize that vaccines are vital for a healthy pregnancy.
Staying vaccinated during your pregnancy isn't just crucial to your health and vital to your unborn baby's well-being.
Dr. John Paul Roberts is an expert OB/GYN specializing in prenatal care. If you're planning to be pregnant or have already conceived, Dr. Roberts provides all the information you require to stay healthy during every trimester of pregnancy.
Importance of vaccinations during pregnancy
Vaccines contain either live or dead viruses and bacteria that train your body to create antibodies to fight off the disease.
The viruses or bacteria in the vaccine are either extremely weak or dead, meaning they can't infect you with the disease.
Vaccines are essential to your health, whether you're pregnant or not. But during pregnancy, vaccines are even more crucial for your unborn baby's health.
Getting vaccinated during pregnancy protects you and protects your unborn baby from harmful diseases that could lead to complications. The vaccines protect you during pregnancy and cross the placenta to your unborn baby, providing protection against dangerous diseases once they're born.
Without certain vaccines, you could get sick during pregnancy and pass harmful diseases to your unborn baby. Your baby is also at risk for these diseases after birth until a pediatrician can vaccinate them.
Which vaccines do I need?
You receive various vaccines at different points in your life, including early childhood and adulthood. But during pregnancy, there are several vaccines that you should be thinking of, and they include:
You can get the Tdap vaccine at any point during pregnancy. Still, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends it between weeks 27 and 36 during each pregnancy.
The Tdap vaccine protects you and your unborn baby from pertussis, also known as whooping cough.
If you don't get the Tdap vaccine during pregnancy, the CDC recommends getting it immediately after giving birth.
You should get the flu vaccine if you're pregnant during flu season. The vaccine protects you and your unborn baby from complications from the flu.
The flu vaccine is extremely safe during pregnancy and can save you from illness and harm to your unborn baby.
Since 2020, COVID-19 has been a real threat to adults, children, and unborn babies. If you get COVID-19 during your pregnancy, you and your unborn baby are at risk of severe complications.
If you're trying to get pregnant or are already pregnant, get the COVID-19 vaccine. It protects against serious illness while your baby develops, potentially preventing harmful birth complications.
Are there any vaccines I can't get?
While vaccines are crucial to your health, some can be detrimental during pregnancy. Dr. Roberts won't give any of the following vaccines to pregnant women, following the CDC guidelines:
Avoid certain travel vaccines, such as yellow fever and typhoid fever, while you're pregnant. If you travel outside the country, talk to Dr. Roberts about the best options for protecting yourself and your baby from harmful diseases.
The CDC also recommends avoiding the MMR vaccine while pregnant because it's a live virus. Although this vaccine is crucial in preventing measles, mumps, and rubella, you should have it before you get pregnant or after giving birth.
Nasal flu vaccine
The nasal flu vaccine is also a live version of the illness, so the CDC recommends avoiding it during pregnancy. If you need the flu vaccine and are pregnant, Dr. Roberts suggests getting the non-live version through a shot.
The CDC also recommends against the HPV vaccine while you're pregnant. If you're concerned about HPV, you can receive the vaccine before pregnancy or after you give birth.
The chickenpox vaccine contains weakened but live varicella-zoster viruses. For this reason, Dr. Roberts doesn't recommend this vaccine during pregnancy. It poses a risk to your health and the health of your unborn baby.
Most vaccines you need are safe during pregnancy, and Dr. Roberts has the highest regard for your and your baby's safety.
Call us at our Plano, Texas, office to discuss vaccinations during pregnancy, or book a consultation with Dr. Roberts online today.