Pregnant women should get a flu shot and whooping cough vaccine (also called Tdap) during each pregnancy to help protect yourself and your baby. When you get the whooping cough vaccine during your pregnancy, your body will create protective antibodies and pass some of them to your baby before birth. These antibodies will provide your baby some short-term, early protection against whooping cough.
Changes in your immune, heart, and lung functions during pregnancy make you more likely to get seriously ill from the flu. Catching the flu also increases your chances for serious problems for your developing baby, including premature labor and delivery.
Your ob-gyn or midwife may recommend you receive some vaccines right after giving birth. Postpartum vaccination will help protect you from getting sick and you will pass some antibodies to your baby through your breastmilk. Vaccination after pregnancy is especially important if you did not receive certain vaccines before or during your pregnancy. It is safe for you to receive vaccines right after giving birth, even while you are breastfeeding.
Some women may need other vaccines before, during, or after they become pregnant. Talk to your doctor to determine your risks and what vaccines are recommended.