Vaccines

All women can decrease their risk of infection by getting the vaccines they need to stay healthy. If you become pregnant, infections can be dangerous for you and the baby. If an infection occurs during pregnancy—or if you get pregnant while you have one of them—some can cause serious birth defects, preterm labor, or illnesses in the baby. 

Some infections can be prevented by vaccines, also known as immunizations. It is important to prevent these infections because they may be harmful to your health. It is especially important for all women who could become pregnant to be up to date on their vaccines. Some vaccines need to be given before you get pregnant because it is dangerous to give them during pregnancy. If you’re not sure of your risk for these diseases, ask your doctor or other health care professional about getting shots to prevent them:

  • Measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR)
  • Tetanus, diphtheria, and whooping cough (Tdap)
  • Chickenpox
  • Hepatitis B
  • Flu (influenza)

Also talk to your doctor about the human papillomavirus (HPV) and polio vaccines.

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