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News about coronavirus – and the vaccine for it – seems to change almost daily, with advice shifting as the science does.
Vaccine hesitancy is more common among pregnant people, and it’s understandable that anyone thinking about trying for a baby might also be worried.
You want to do the best for you and your potential baby, as well as enhance the chances you’ll get pregnant in the first place.
Previous guidance from Public Health England stated that you should not get the vaccine if you plan on getting pregnant within the next three months, and to avoid pregnancy for two months after your second dose.
This wasn’t because there was a known danger, but as a precautionary measure while further tests were done.
However, this advice has since been altered in line with the evidence, and you are now able to have the vaccine if you’re pregnant or trying.
Dr Matthew Prior, Consultant Doctor and Medical Director at Dr Fertility comments: ‘The Government have updated guidance on Covid vaccination for women trying to conceive and pregnant women Covid.
‘Specific research into the effect of the Covid-19 vaccine in pregnancy has not yet been carried out and the initial advice was cautious.
‘However, this advice has changed. The rationale is that there is no known risk associated with giving non-live vaccines during pregnancy.
‘These types of vaccines cannot replicate, so they cannot cause infection in either the woman or the unborn child.’
The latest advice from The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) states: ‘Women who are trying to conceive do not need to avoid pregnancy after vaccination.’
Things become a little trickier when it comes to those who are already pregnant.
JCVI states: ‘Although the available data do not indicate any safety concern or harm to pregnancy, there is insufficient evidence to recommend routine use of COVID-19 vaccines during pregnancy.
‘Pregnant women with underlying conditions that put them at very high risk of serious complications from COVID should discuss the risks and benefits with their doctor before deciding whether to have the vaccination.’
Essentially, now that it doesn’t appear there are specific risks, you should still proceed with caution, but weigh up the risks to you.
If you – and your GP or other health professional – decide that Covid-19 will be more harmful to you than any currently unknown side effects you might face, you may choose to be vaccinated to protect yourself.
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