According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, pregnant women need a flu shot. A flu shot can protect yourself, your unborn baby and newborn from serious illness from the flu.
Pregnant women are more likely to suffer more serious illness and complications from the flu than women who are not pregnant when they get the virus. During pregnancy your immune system, heart and lungs change. Catching the seasonal influenza virus while pregnant can lead to hospitalizations and even death. The flu can also cause serious problems for unborn babies, including premature labor and delivery.
The flu shot is safe for pregnant women. It has been administered to millions of pregnant women over the years and will not harm the mother or baby.
You can also prevent the flu by washing your hands frequently and sanitizing items around your home with a natural cleaner that are handled by multiple family members.
If you are pregnant and have flu-like symptoms make sure you call your doctor right away. He may prescribe an antiviral medication to treat the flu.
Having a fever during pregnancy can lead to birth defects in an unborn baby. If you come down with a fever treat it with acetaminophen (Tylenol® is a popular brand).
Call 911 right away if you have any of these symptoms:
- Pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen
- Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
- Fever that does not come down after taking acetaminophen
- If your baby’s movements have decreased or stopped
The Healthy Moms Magazine recommends that all pregnant women get the flu vaccine for the best protection from the seasonal flu virus. Please visit lungusa.org to find a flu vaccination clinic near you.