Flu Shots Taken By Pregnant Moms Are Good For The Babies
The babies are less likely to catch a cold or to be admitted to the hospital with a respiratory illness until they reach the age of six months. Babies under six months are less likely to catch a flu during the season when flu is most common than babies over six months because the first category is still bearing their mothers’ antibodies. The situation changes in the case of severe respiratory infections, like the ones caused by the swine flu pandemic, when the babies, although they are hospitalized and kept on medication, are still to young to get flu shots, so many of them die in hospital.
The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommended since many years ago that pregnant women should get a vaccine against flu because the effect of the flu medication has worse effects on them than these shots, and it has been proved recently that the newborn babies benefit from them too. Angelia Eick, formerly a researcher with Johns Hopkins in Baltimore and now with the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Center in Silver Spring, Maryland, has studied the effect of giving pregnant women flu shots on the increase of babies protection under 6 months old. Eick and her colleagues studied children from Navajo and White Mountain Apache Indian reservations where people are more likely to get severe respiratory infections than those in the general population severe respiratory infections than those in the general population because they are lee likely to get medication and treatment and do not have access to flu shots. The team has studied 1,160 mother-baby pairs during three flu seasons which were taken blood samples before and after the flu season.
In the flu season which was immediately after the child’s birth, the babies of the mothers which received a flu vaccine were 41 percent less likely to catch flu than the babies of the mothers that did not receive a shot. The babies whose mothers’ received shots also had a higher level of antibodies, two or three times higher than the babies whose mothers did not get a flu shot. The belief that the babies actually benefit from their mothers getting vaccines in the first six months of their lives, and this is valuable information in the case of more serious infections, such as the 2009 H1N1 flu virus, which mostly hit pregnant women and young babies .11