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COVID Vaccination During Pregnancy And Its Benefits For The Baby

By Dr. Nikita Toshi +2 more

What do we know about Covid vaccination for pregnant women?

While people around the globe are debating about the importance of COVID-19 vaccine, it is safe to say that we have come to the conclusion that the vaccines are definitely effective, they can significantly reduce the severity of the infection and it also brings down the number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients and COVID-19 mortality rates. The first set of people who received the COVID-19 vaccine were older people and people with comorbidities, as they were believed to be the most vulnerable. The vaccines were later made available to adults and children.


Initially, there was a lot of confusion regarding the COVID-19 vaccine for pregnant women. Most people thought it was best to wait. However, with further research, experts now suggest expecting women to get vaccinated. Pregnant women in India can opt for any COVID-19 vaccine available to them, including Covishield, Covaxin and Sputnik V. There are a few other vaccines widely available for pregnant women around the world and are considered safe.

The importance of COVID-19 vaccines for pregnant people

COVID-19 can indeed be severe for people who are pregnant. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have listed pregnant women under COVID-19 high-risk groups. Getting vaccinated for COVID-19 while pregnant is now considered a must. If you are still wary about it, it is best to speak to your doctor regarding the same. 

When pregnant people are affected with COVID-19, they may be at an increased risk of ICU admission and may need mechanical ventilation. There have also been cases of pregnant women who have symptomatic COVID-19 passing away.

It is scientifically proven that getting the COVID-19 vaccine when you are pregnant, can protect you and your baby from getting extremely sick. It can further help in reducing pregnancy complications or premature births due to severe Covid related illness.

Based on my observations, I may say that if you are pregnant and are older, overweight, or have pre-existing medical conditions like high blood pressure, heart conditions, or diabetes, it’s important to be extra cautious. As you may be at higher risk of getting seriously ill from COVID-19. Talk to your doctor for guidance and get vaccinated as a precautionary measure.

Dr. Smita barode, B.A.M.S, M.S.

Does COVID-19 vaccine during pregnancy build immunity in babies?

When people receive an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine during pregnancy, their bodies build antibodies against COVID-19, similar to people who are not pregnant. Antibodies made after a pregnant person received an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine were found in umbilical cord blood. This means COVID-19 vaccination during pregnancy might help protect babies against COVID-19. More data are needed to determine how these antibodies, similar to those produced with other vaccines, may protect the baby.

Research has looked at children under six months old to find out whether the benefits of COVID-19 vaccination during pregnancy has positive impacts on infants who are otherwise too young to receive vaccines. Mothers who were vaccinated during pregnancy had babies who did not require to be hospitalized. The COVID-19 vaccines were 61% effective overall. 

I may have awesome news for breastfeeding moms. When you get vaccinated against COVID-19, the antibodies your body produces may be passed on to your baby through breast milk. This means that getting vaccinated might potentially provide some protection to your little one against the virus.

Dr. Anuja Bodhare, B.A.M.S, M.D (Ayu)

Those mothers who were vaccinated 21 weeks through 14 days before delivery, had babies who were found to be 80% protected. Whereas the vaccination effectiveness remains only 32% for the babies whose mothers had been vaccinated much earlier during their pregnancy. 

Pregnant women should be encouraged to get vaccinated. It ensures that both the mother and the infant are protected. The CDC also recommends that women who are planning to get pregnant now or in the future must consider getting vaccinated and stay up to date with COVID-19 shots.

If you’re pregnant or have recently given birth, it’s important to stay informed about COVID-19 vaccine recommendations. According to ACOG (American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists), they recommend that pregnant women or those who have recently given birth may get a booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine after completing their initial vaccine shots.

Dr. Siddharth Gupta, B.A.M.S, M.D (Ayu)

Busting the most common myths regarding the COVID-19 vaccine among people who are pregnant

  • Myth: If I am already experiencing a high-risk or complicated pregnancy, I should skip the vaccination.

The fact is, if you are pregnant and have no health concerns or complications, you are still at a higher risk of severe illness and hospitalization if you get infected with COVID-19 and are not vaccinated. With a complicated or high-risk pregnancy, getting vaccinated is even more important. Speak to your doctor and follow the advice. Myth: There is no point in getting vaccinated because my baby and I can still get COVID-19 and pass it to others.

The fact is not getting vaccinated makes you eight times more likely to get COVID-19 than those who are vaccinated. This should be enough reason for you to get vaccinated. To add to that, pregnant people who are not vaccinated are 25 times more likely to experience hospitalization or death. They are also more likely to spread it to others. 

  • Myth: I already had COVID-19, so my natural immunity will protect me and the baby during pregnancy. 

Fact is, even though the body can create antibodies to protect itself from reinfection, we do not know for sure how long they can last. Moreover, natural antibodies may not work in the same ways for all people. Getting vaccinated is the best option for future protection. If you are still unsure, talk to your doctor or OB/GYN. They will provide you with the best information to keep you and your baby safe and healthy.

From what I have observed, getting vaccinated against COVID-19 brings several benefits, even during pregnancy. First, it may lower your risk of experiencing severe illness. Additionally, vaccination might decrease the risk of premature birth or stillbirth, providing added protection for both the parent and the baby.

Dr. Rajeev Singh, BAMS

Conclusion:

Pregnant women can get vaccinated at any point during their pregnancy if they haven’t already received both doses of the Covid-19 vaccine. There are no reasons to be hesitant about taking the COVID-19 vaccine when pregnant. You must remember that the pros outweigh the cons. If you get fever as a side-effect of the vaccine, home remedies can manage them well. In case you are pregnant and you have a prior history of allergy to vaccine or sensitivity to any of the ingredients in the vaccine, you must tell the concerns to your healthcare provider and do what seems the best thing to do.

Disclaimer: The information included at this site is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a healthcare professional. Because of unique individual needs, the reader should consult their physician to determine the appropriateness of the information for the reader’s situation

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