Some of these vaccinations are recommended before pregnancy, some will be given while you are pregnant, while some shots will continue post-delivery.

Here is a list of the vaccinations that your doctor will suggest you take while you are pregnant. In case your doctor doesn’t discuss the same, make sure to ask about it.

The following vaccinations are given before you get pregnant, and are not to be taken during pregnancy. In case you are already pregnant and haven’t received these shots, please discuss with your doctor about a safe immunization plan.

1. MMR (Measles, Mumps, Rubella)

Get the shot at least 4 weeks before you try for a pregnancy. Measles can cause rashes, fever, cold and cough, watery eyes, diarrhea and even pneumonia. In severe cases, it can lead to brain damage and even death. Mumps can cause fever, swelling in salivary glands, loss of appetite, headache and muscle ache, brain inflammation, and in rare cases, death. Rubella can cause fever, rashes and cough and cold, as well as miscarriage or birth defects.

2. Pneumococcal

Your doctor will recommend this if you have some chronic kidney, lung or heart disease, or diabetes.

3. Varicella (Chickenpox)

Chickenpox can cause severe rashes on the body, as well as cause fever. During pregnancy, it can cause severe infection in both the mother and the unborn baby. Speak to your doctor about taking it as a precautionary vaccine. You should wait for at least 4 weeks before you try for a pregnancy.

Once you have received the vaccinations mentioned above, your doctor will schedule you for the following during your pregnancy:

4. Whooping Cough (Pertussis)

You should get this vaccination during your third trimester, somewhere around the 28th week. The vaccination will mainly help to protect your baby from the condition immediately after birth.

5. Flu (Influenza)

Flu can lead to severe health complications during pregnancy, especially if it’s the H1N1 virus. The vaccination will help protect your baby right from the time of birth till about 6 months of age.

You may experience some side effects till about 3 weeks after you get the shot. While a mild fever is common, do get in touch with your doctor if you are in pain or discomfort of any kind. Here are some of the symptoms you may have:

  • Redness or soreness in the injection area
  • Headache or fever
  • Feeling tired
  • Rashes
  • Swelling and or pain in the neck
  • Pain or stiffness in the joints

Your doctor will be your best guide about the vaccinations that you need before and during pregnancy, so make sure you talk about it and understand how it protects you and your baby.