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Pregnant? Here’s Why the Flu Shot Is a Really Good Idea

The CDC says you shouldn't think twice.
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profile picture of Anisa Arsenault
Associate Editor
Updated
March 13, 2017
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Image: Raymond Forbes

Now that you’re pregnant, you’re hyperaware of everything that’s going into your body. From  tuna to Tylenol, you’re second-guessing everything. But a report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says you shouldn’t think twice about a flu shot.

The March of Dimes backs the report, emphasizing that changes to a pregnant woman’s immune system, heart and lungs put her at an increased risk of harmful flu effects. Babies born to moms who got vaccinated reap the benefits too; your flu shot protects baby from serious influenza-related illnesses for her first six months of life, plus a slew of other conditions, like asthma, heart problems and diabetes.

The report didn’t find any scary side effects of the immunization—like a higher risk of preterm birth or birth defects—among the thousands of moms-to-be studied. In fact, still births were actually less common for vaccinated women.

Currently, only about half of all pregnant women choose to get the flu shot each year. The CDC recommends that everyone 6 months and older be vaccinated annually.

Please note: The Bump and the materials and information it contains are not intended to, and do not constitute, medical or other health advice or diagnosis and should not be used as such. You should always consult with a qualified physician or health professional about your specific circumstances.

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