Immunizations for a Healthy Pregnancy

pregnancy

If you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, help your baby get a healthy start in life. Vaccines can help protect both you and your baby against diseases during pregnancy and after birth. Whether it is your first baby, or you are planning to have another child, make sure you are up to date on your vaccinations to protect you and your growing family.  Learn more about which vaccines you may need before, during, and after pregnancy. 

 

 

Before Pregnancy

before

Find out if you need any vaccines before you get pregnant. Being up to date on vaccines can protect you and your baby from preventable illnesses. Although many vaccines may last a lifetime, adults may need new vaccines or "booster" shots to keep them protected. Talk to your healthcare provider to see if you need any vaccines to protect against the following diseases:

  • Measles, Mumps, and Rubella (MMR)
  • Chickenpox (Varicella)
  • Hepatitis B
  • Tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (Tdap)
  • Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
  • Influenza (Flu)
  • Other immunizations recommended by your healthcare provider. 

Let your healthcare provider know about any vaccines you have received while pregnant.

During Pregnancy

During

Babies get disease protection (immunity) from their mom during pregnancy. This protection will help them when they are born until they can get vaccines and build immunity on their own. It is important to ask your healthcare provider about vaccines that help build immunity and protect against:

  • Tetanus, Diphtheria, and Pertussis (Tdap)
  • Influenza (Flu)—Once a year during flu season

Ask your healthcare provider about other vaccines they recommend, including protection against:

  • Hepatitis B
  • Hepatitis A
  • Meningococcal (or other travel vaccines) 
  • Some women may need other vaccines

After Giving Birth—Get Caught Up!

After the birth of your baby, get any immunizations you may have missed that your healthcare provider recommends. You can get some vaccines in the hospital before you leave. Getting vaccinations after birth will help protect you and your baby by passing on antibodies to help your baby fight diseases. Antibodies from these vaccines will be passed to your baby through breastmilk if you are able to breastfeed. 

It is important for your baby to start getting his or her own vaccines shortly after birth. Newborns have not built up protection yet, make sure anyone who will be around your baby is also up to date on their vaccines.
 

Woman and Infant

Help protect your baby:

  • Ask family, friends, and caregivers if they are up to date on their vaccines, including the whooping cough vaccine (DTaP for children and Tdap for teens and adults) and the flu vaccine.
  • Keep your baby away from sick people.
  • Remind people around your baby to wash their hands often. 

Other Considerations

Vaccines to Avoid While Pregnant or Nursing

Vaccines are safe and recommended for women before, during, and after pregnancy. However, there are some vaccines that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) do NOT recommend during pregnancy.

  • Measles, Mumps, and Rubella (MMR) Vaccine 
  • "Live" Influenza Vaccine (Nasal Flu Vaccine)
  • Varicella (Chicken Pox) Vaccine
  • Certain travel vaccines to prevent Yellow Fever, Typhoid Fever, or Japanese Encephalitis may also not be recommended.

These vaccines may pose a risk to your baby. Women should not get pregnant for at least one month after receiving the MMR or Varicella Vaccine.  If a woman finds out she is pregnant after receiving the first dose, she should delay additional doses until after the birth of her child. If you received a vaccine for MMR or Varicella before you knew you were pregnant, talk with your healthcare provider right away. 

Traveling While Pregnant

Talk to your healthcare provider if you are planning to travel while pregnant. Your health care provider may recommend additional travel vaccines that are recommended for pregnant women. 

CDC Travel Vaccine Information for Pregnant Women

 

Always talk to your health care provider. He or she can tell you which vaccines you need, based on your age and your health history. Your health care provider can also run simple tests to see if you need any additional vaccines—Take the vaccine assessment tool to find out which vaccines you may need. 

 

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Pregnancy Related Vaccine Resources

Vaccine Recommendations for:

For more information or to request materials,
contact the San Diego Immunization Unit via e-mail or call us at (866) 358-2966.