Jasmine is 32 years old and pregnant. She has several friends and family members who have had the flu, and some have been really quite ill (her mother has been fighting pneumonia).
Jasmine asks Check Up if she can be vaccinated against the flu while she is pregnant and how best to avoid contracting this flu, which seems to be getting worse every year.
Being vaccinated against the flu is the very best way to attempt to protect yourself and your family members from contracting the flu virus. Getting flu is not nice when you’re expecting.
The flu tends to be more severe in pregnancy and may actually last much longer in pregnant women, where it is more likely to be associated with complications like pneumonia, which may lead to hospitalisation. Serious flu can even result in pre-term labour and early delivery.
However, being pregnant does not make you more likely to contract the flu than other women of a similar age who aren’t pregnant. Also, your having the flu will not hurt the baby growing inside you!
However, your best bet for avoiding the flu or diminishing its symptoms if you do get it is to take the flu shot! You can get the flu shot at any stage of your pregnancy. Flu season begins in October and can last until as late as May, so get vaccinated now.
Studies done in 2017 also revealed that vaccinating our children is the best way to significantly reduce their risk of dying from influenza. this includes older people, pregnant women and people with long-term health problems, who are more vulnerable to serious flu complications. Pregnant women can be vaccinated with any licensed and age-appropriate flu vaccine.
This flu season, only injectable flu vaccines are recommended, and these are available in Jamaica. The content of the flu vaccine is reviewed and updated every year to protect against the three or four flu viruses that research suggests will be most commonly occur.
If you haven’t gotten your flu vaccine already, get it now! The flu season is still active.
It takes about two weeks after vaccination for the body’s immune system to give protection against the flu, and this protection lasts only for the current flu season. This means that yearly vaccination is necessary, particularly for children, pregnant women, the elderly, and those with chronic disorders.
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