Where is this service available?
This service is available in select LloydsPharmacy stores.
You can use our online booking tool to book your appointment or call into your local store.
Why should you get the flu vaccination during pregnancy?
Contracting the flu while pregnant is very dangerous and can lead to several problems. The most common side effect of the flu is bronchitis, a chest infection that can progress to pneumonia if left untreated. This becomes more serious when pregnant.
These potential problems in pregnancy include hospitalisation, premature birth, a lower birth weight and even stillbirth.
Receiving the flu vaccination during pregnancy can protect your unborn baby from the virus for up to six months after birth. Additionally, it may prevent you from contracting the flu and spreading it to your child.
Is the flu vaccination safe in pregnancy?
The flu vaccination is extremely safe for pregnant women and their unborn babies. According to studies, getting the flu vaccination at any point in pregnancy, from the very beginning until the due date is safe.
The vaccination you receive is called the quadrivalent influenza vaccine (QIV).
When should you get the flu vaccination?
Each year, the flu vaccination is available from September through to the end of April. At any stage during your pregnancy, you can receive the vaccination. However, aim to receive it as soon as you can during your pregnancy.
Even though it's preferable to have the vaccination early on in flu season if you missed this window, you could still obtain it later in the winter. If you find out you're pregnant later in the flu season and haven’t already been vaccinated, you can still get the vaccination.
The COVID-19 vaccination can be administered at the same time. Regardless of whether you have previously had the COVID-19 vaccine, you should still obtain the flu vaccination. The best time to get vaccinated against the flu is in the autumn, before it begins to spread.
What are the side effects of the flu vaccine?
You can experience some minor adverse effects following vaccination. These may consist of:
- Swelling, redness, or pain where the injection was administered
- Fever (excessive fever, 38 degrees Celsius or higher)
- Light perspiration and shivering
- Feeling tired
Take paracetamol and get some rest if you have any of these adverse effects. It's safe to consume paracetamol while pregnant. It will prevent a fever. Ibuprofen should not be taken unless your GP advises you to do so. Most reactions are minor, and severe side effects such severe allergic reactions are quite uncommon.
Do I still need to get the flu vaccination if I had it last year?
Yes, as the flu viruses changes each year. As a result, this year's flu strains may be different from previous years and the vaccination used to protect them may differ. As well as this, the flu vaccination effectiveness deteriorates over time.
If you received the flu vaccination during the previous flu season because you were pregnant (during that pregnancy or an earlier pregnancy), or because you belong to a vulnerable group, you should receive it again this season.
How do I obtain the flu vaccination?
You can have your flu vaccination administered in your local LloydsPharmacy. You can book an appointment through our online booking tool.
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