Vaccines are safe during pregnancyAre you pregnant? Do you have a friend or loved one who’s expecting?

Maybe your baby’s already arrived, you’re breastfeeding, or you’re even just thinking about getting pregnant.

Whatever your situation, congratulations are in order!

There’s even more good news for you: Whatever comes next, you can protect yourself and your child safely with vaccines.

That’s right: Vaccines have been shown to be safe if you are trying to get pregnant, are currently pregnant or are breastfeeding.

By getting vaccinated with every pregnancy, you’re not only protecting yourself, you’re giving your baby some early protection too.

Babies can get some disease protection from their mom during pregnancy. Getting flu, Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis), and COVID-19 vaccines (including booster shots) during pregnancy helps your body create protective antibodies (proteins produced by the body to fight off diseases), according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC.)

You can pass those antibodies on to your baby, helping make their immune system stronger and better at protecting them from harmful diseases during their first few months of life. Getting vaccinated and providing antibodies to your child can be the first gift you give them and the first time you protect them.

It’s very important to stay up to date with Tdap and COVID-19 vaccines during pregnancy, including COVID-19 booster shots when it’s time to get one, for several reasons. If you’re pregnant or were recently pregnant, you’re more likely to have severe symptoms, become very sick, and even be hospitalized from COVID-19 compared to people who are not pregnant. You can have an increased risk of complications if you’re infected with COVID-19 during pregnancy. Pregnant women with COVID-19 can also have an increased risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes, such as preterm birth, compared with pregnant women without COVID-19.

Side effects after COVID-19 vaccines are usually mild. Learn more about possible side effects at the CDC’s possible side effects page.

So check with a doctor or health care provider about what vaccines you need and how to go about getting them as a part of your prenatal care.

To learn more about the COVID-19 vaccine and pregnancy, view the Arizona Department of Health Services’ guide on COVID-19 Vaccines for People who Are Pregnant or Breastfeeding.

To read more about the COVID-19 vaccine and planning for pregnancy and for fertility, visit the CDC’s information on COVID-19 Vaccines for People Who Would Like to Have a Baby and COVID-19 Vaccines While Pregnant or Breastfeeding.