Sniffle, sniffle… cough, cough… ‘Tis the season for the flu. October through May is flu season. In the US, 5-20% of the population acquires the flu each year. Have you received your annual flu shot?
The CDC and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommend the inactivated flu vaccination for all expectant women. This can be administered in any trimester. Prevention of the flu is of utter importance. Unfortunately, every year there are flu related deaths. Pregnant moms are at an elevated risk for this tragedy because of their suppressed immune system. They have an increased risk of life threatening complications from the flu such as dehydration, pneumonia, and other infections.
The flu vaccine can also serve to protect their baby since they receive passive antibodies from their mom. Babies cannot receive the flu vaccine until they are six months old.
Flu symptoms include body aches, runny nose, fever, sore throat and cough and occasionally nausea and vomiting. If you are pregnant and experiencing these symptoms, please contact your physician immediately. The vaccine can only help to prevent the flu. During this flu season, please remember to wash your hands frequently, avoid contact with sick people and avoid touching your nose, eyes and mouth.