You’re down to the final few weeks of your pregnancy, and you’re almost ready to meet your little one. At your third trimester, you should be increasing your check-ups to once every 2 weeks (between 27 – 36 weeks) and switching to once-a-week until your delivery date.
This handy checklist will keep you on track during this final homestretch to ensure you have all bases covered for a smooth delivery. We’ve put together a list of essential things to check with your doctor as your due date draws near.
☑ Get Your Tdap Shot
Whooping cough is a respiratory infection that is life-threatening for infants, especially within their first 6 months, as it may lead to pneumonia and brain injury. Most young babies with whooping cough are likely to be admitted to hospital and they may be at the risk of dying from the disease. 1,2
Did you know that mothers can pass on their antibodies to their babies during pregnancy?3 This helps protect newborns from these infectious diseases during their first few months, as they cannot get vaccinated until they are 3 months old.4
The Ministry of Health Singapore strongly recommends influenza and pertussis vaccination in pregnancy, in line with international guideline recommendations from the United Kingdom, the United States and other countries. In 2017, the Ministry extended the use of Medisave for vaccines under the National Adult Immunisation Schedule, which include the vaccine against influenza and pertussis.4 Remember, you can help protect your unborn baby against whooping cough by getting vaccinated with Tdap Vaccine during the 3rd trimester (between 27 – 36 weeks) of your pregnancy.5
☑ Protecting your baby from flu
Influenza is a highly infectious respiratory viral illness that is transmitted from person to person via respiratory droplets propelled by coughing or sneezing. While most infected people will recover within 1 to 2 weeks, pregnant women, at any stage of pregnancy, are more likely to develop severe illness and are therefore at a higher risk of morbidity, and even mortality. 4,6,7,8 Getting the common cold while you’re pregnant could cause severe problems like early labour and may increase the likelihood of birth defects. 7,9
The flu shot is safe at any stage of pregnancy, and also poses no risk for women who are breastfeeding. What’s more, it can also provide protection to newborns when vaccinated during pregnancy, as mothers can pass on antibodies to their developing baby. 4
Newborns are very likely to catch the flu from family members and caregivers, so be sure that everyone at home is up-to-date with their annual flu vaccinations before coming into close contact with the baby.10
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