NHS Blackburn with Darwen CCG

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Pregnancy and the Flu

Why flu vaccination is important for pregnant women

It’s known that flu can cause serious complications for you and your baby. You could both get ill. All pregnant women should have the flu vaccine to protect themselves and their babies.

The flu vaccine can be given safely at any stage of pregnancy, from conception onwards.

Pregnant women benefit from the flu vaccine because it will:

  • Reduce the risk of serious complications such as pneumonia, particularly in the later stages of pregnancy
  • Help protect their baby, who will continue to have some immunity to flu during the first few months of his or her life
  • Reduce the chance of the mother passing the infection to her new baby
  • Reduce the risk of miscarriage or having a baby born too soon or with a low birthweight
  • If you have flu symptoms, you should talk to your doctor urgently. If you do have flu, there is a prescribed medicine that might help or reduce the risk of complications, but it needs to be taken as soon as possible after the symptoms appear.

The flu jab is the safest way to help protect you and your baby. It’s free because you need it, however many months pregnant you are, and however fit and healthy you might feel.

Finally, keep yourself warm. Your home should be at least 18C (65F). You may be eligible for financial schemes and discounts to help you pay for heating. See Keep Warm, Keep Well for details.