Obstetric Services in Richmond, VA

Flu Shot FAQ’s For Pregnant Women

Should I get a flu shot when pregnant?

Yes. Flu shots are a safe and effective way to protect both you and your baby from serious illness and complications of the flu, and they can be given anytime during pregnancy. When the flu shot is given during pregnancy, it also helps to protect infants under the age of 6 months who are too young to receive the vaccination themselves.

Is the flu nasal vaccine safe when pregnant?

You should not receive the nasal spray vaccine as it is made with the live flu virus. The nasal spray, however, is safe for family members to receive.

Will the flu shot give me the flu?

No. You cannot get the flu from the flu shot.

Are preservatives in flu vaccines safe for my baby?

Yes. The type of preservative (thimerosal) used in trace amounts in some vaccines has not been shown to be harmful to a pregnant woman or her baby. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as well as the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommend that pregnant women receive the inactive flu vaccine (shot) either with or without thimerosal.

I am breastfeeding my baby. Is it safe to get vaccinated?

Yes. The flu vaccine may be given to breastfeeding mothers if they were not vaccinated while they were pregnant. Breastfeeding mothers pass antibodies through their breast milk, which may also reduce the infant’s chance of getting sick with the flu.