Tips to Help Avoid the Flu While Pregnant
At certain times of the year, conditions are more conducive to catching the flu, and if you’re pregnant that’s a source of worry. However, it’s possible to avoid the flu while pregnant with some preventive measures.
Although it’s a viral process that only affects the mother, it can create complications. Because of that, we’re bringing you some helpful tips to help you to avoid catching this virus.
Colds cause us great discomfort, and interrupt our daily routine. Existing medications help to relieve symptoms but the common flu process can still take approximately 7 days before its symptoms are fully evident.
In the case of pregnant women, you should remember that, in order to not affect the baby, there are certain medications for flu that you won’t be able to take. Don’t take any risks and follow your doctor’s advice.
How to avoid the flu while pregnant?
Pregnancy should be an enjoyable time as you make preparations for the arrival of a new family member. The mother needs to be in good health in order to have enough energy to cope. The following tips make it easier to avoid the flu during pregnancy.
1. Get the flu shot
Pregnant women are one of the most vulnerable groups to flu, and, for this reason, they should get the flu shot in order to avoid this illness. It’s important to clarify that this vaccine doesn’t endanger the baby in any way. Likewise, it can be administered at any stage of pregnancy.
2. Stay away from sick people
Sharing areas, and having direct contact with sick people favors the spread of the flu virus. You should avoid visits to family or friend’s houses or even health centers where you know the virus is present.
Sometimes it’s preferable to ask for the help of a third party to make certain purchases or carry out certain tasks to avoid this contact. Having the flu while pregnant is a risk that you should try to avoid.
3. Maintain and improve hygiene habits
Both personal hygiene and household cleaning take on even greater importance during these months. To avoid the flu while pregnant you should always wash your hands with soap and water every time you handle an item that other people have touched, even if they don’t exhibit any signs of flu (remember the 7-day incubation period). This is especially important when you return home after having been out in public places.
All your home furniture and frames should also be cleaned daily. Bacteria and other particles that cause the disease can easily accumulate there. Airing the house well, even though it may be cold, is another important task.
4. Don’t expose yourself to temperature changes
We all enjoy being nice and warm at home with the heating on in winter, and we often go around the house with very few clothes on. Even though we enjoy this, it’s a serious mistake. When we go outside, the temperature change can be so abrupt that it can easily favor catching viruses.
5. Healthy rest and eating
Having a strong immune system is one of the best ways of avoiding the flu while pregnant. Getting enough sleep and a nutrient-rich eating routine are indispensable. Women with more balanced eating habits are less likely to get sick.
How to cope if a pregnant woman has already contracted the flu?
It isn’t recommended that a pregnant woman should take medicine. She should try to be as patient as possible and cope with the symptoms as best she can. Here are some tips for you:
- Hydration. You should drink a lot of liquid to avoid the dehydration that the effects of the virus can cause.
- Physiological serum. One of the biggest discomforts is the inability to breathe because of a blocked up nose. Placing a few drops of physiological serum clears the nostrils and isn’t harmful.
- Adjust the bed for a better rest. It’s helpful to sleep with your head higher than the rest of the body. Placing more cushions favors good breathing.
- Don’t stop eating. A frequent flu symptom is a lack of appetite. Despite not feeling like eating, you should. This will give you the energy you need to fight the disease more effectively.
Recommended food for pregnant women with the flu
- Soups are nutritious and provide lots of vitamins. In addition, they’re easy to swallow when there is irritation in the throat area.
- Vegetables and citrus fruits are strong in vitamin C. Specialists agree that they help pregnant women to recover quicker.
- You need to choose food and meals that are easy to digest, and that don’t cause pain or discomfort.
As you can see, even though the flu wouldn’t normally affect the fetus in any way, it’s important for a pregnant woman to have plenty of energy during her pregnancy.It might interest you...
All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.
- Barberá Belda, Beatriz. (2010). Complejo hospitalario de Albacete. Extraído de: http://www.chospab.es/area_medica/obstetriciaginecologia/docencia/sesionesClinicasEspecificas/2009-2010/sesion20091009.pdf
- CDC. Las embarazadas necesitan la vacuna contra la gripe. Extraído de: https://www.cdc.gov/flu/pdf/freeresources/languages/flushot_pregnant_factsheet.pdf