COVID Vaccine While Pregnancy And Breastfeeding: Should We?
The CDC indicates that pregnant and breastfeeding women are a high-risk group for severe illness from COVID-19. However, Is it safe for the mother and baby to get covid vaccines while breastfeeding? How about pregnant women and those trying to get pregnant? The article from Liftyolife (liftyolife.com) will give you all the necessary information about receiving while you are pregnant and breastfeeding.
Please note: All the information in this article is from trusted sources, including the CDC, FDA, and WHO SAGE.
1. The higher risk of getting COVID-19
Pregnant women and breastfeeding women are vulnerable to severe illnesses, complications, and death due to COVID-19 compared to non-pregnant people. During pregnancy, the immune system of pregnant people changes, making them particularly susceptible to pathogens such as the coronavirus. However, pregnant and lactating women are initially not included in the vaccine trials because of various concerns. The concerns include safety and liability not only for the mother but also for the baby.
2. Should people who are pregnant and breastfeeding receive the vaccines?
The CDC shows that as of 27th September 2021, more than 125.000 confirmed cases are reported in pregnant people, of which about 22,000 hospitalized cases and 161 deaths (1). These numbers increase quickly in August, especially death cases in pregnant people.
According to CDC, the total number of pregnant women who were fully vaccinated as of Oct 23th, 2021, is
Data report from the CDC.
The CDC and FDA now recommend pregnant, lactating individuals and those trying to get pregnant receive the vaccine. “CDC encourages all pregnant people or people who are thinking about becoming pregnant and those breastfeeding to get vaccinated to protect themselves from COVID-19,” said CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky.
As per this recommendation, pregnant women especially should receive the vaccines prior to and during pregnancy. Data from the National COVID-19 Related Hospitalization Network (COVID-NET) shows that approximately 97% of pregnant women admitted to hospital with confirmed COVID-19 are unvaccinated. The risk of hospitalization, in unvaccinated pregnant women, was 2 times higher. In addition, the risk of death increased by 70% in pregnant people. If you are still concerned about getting the vaccine during your pregnancy, we highly recommend you discuss it with your doctor.
2.1. Covid vaccine while pregnant
Getting the vaccine could protect you from severe illness of COVID-19 such as hospitalization, intensive-care unit (ICU) admission, invasive ventilation support, and preterm birth.
- If you are pregnant, you can get the vaccine without any additional documentation.
- If you are pregnant after getting the first dose (Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna), you should get a second dose to protect yourself well.
2.2. Covid vaccine while breastfeeding
Are you concerned about receiving covid vaccine while breastfeeding? The CDC recommends all people under the age of 12 should get vaccines, including lactating women. Some studies show that mothers who receive vaccines have antibodies in their breast milk. These antibodies will protect your baby (2,3).
3. Guidelines for pregnant and breastfeeding womenHere is the following guideline for pregnant and lactating women to get the vaccine:
- The FDA states that pregnant and lactating women should discuss with their healthcare provider before receiving a vaccine.
- The recommended type of vaccine for pregnant and lactating women is FDA – authorized COVID-19 vaccines. Three types of vaccines used in the U.S include Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen.
- The WHO SAGE recommends that pregnant and lactating women (especially those who are health workers) get the vaccine.
- The WHO SAGE also advises that fully-vaccinated mothers continue lactating after vaccination.
4. Vaccine side effects you should notice
Side effects can occur after getting any type of vaccine. If you get a fever after the following vaccination, the CDC recommends you to take acetaminophen (Tylenol®).
Some people could have allergic reactions when they receive the vaccine, although the ratio is rare. Please talk with the healthcare provider if you have a history of allergic reactions to any other vaccine.
5. Frequently asked question
5.1. Can I be positive with COVID-19 from the available vaccines?
No. You can not be positive with COVID-19 after receiving the COVID vaccines. You can experience temporary side effects. But this is an indication of your immune response to the vaccination, not COVID-19.
5.2. Do the vaccines affect my pregnancy?
No. There are no adverse pregnancy-related outcomes and adverse outcomes affecting the baby when pregnant women receive the vaccines.
5.3. Do I have a risk of miscarriage after receiving the vaccines?
The data report from the CDC v-safe COVID-19 Vaccine Registry did not find any increased risk of miscarriage based on 2,500 pregnant women who get m-ARN vaccines (4).
5.4. Should breastfeeding women receive the vaccine?
Yes. WHO SAGE recommends people who are currently breastfeeding can get the vaccines because the m-ARN vaccine is not the live virus vaccine. Receiving the COVID vaccine while breastfeeding can not affect the breastfeeding child biologically and clinically.
5.5. Is it safe for a breastfeeding child after their mother receives the vaccine?
Yes. Because the vaccines used in the U.S are non-replicating (Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen) and not a live virus vaccine (Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna). WHO SAGE clarifies these vaccines are safe for a breastfeeding child.
COVID vaccine while breastfeeding is safe for both mother and baby. Liftyolife (liftyolife.com) is always here to bring the latest information for our lovely readers. Follow us, and stay tuned!