I recently interviewed Dr. Bob Sears, author of The Vaccine Book: Making the Right Decision for Your Child. I'll share more of my interview with you in the forthcoming weeks, but I wanted to be sure to pass along two pieces of information about pregnancy and vaccines that Dr. Bob particularly stressed.
Flu Shot - Dr. Bob said that many women are offered the flu shot during their pregnancy, "It's very important that pregnant women know that a lot of brands of flu shots still have mercury in them (it's one of the only places you'll find it...) and it's important that fetuses don't get exposed to mercury." He advises that expecting moms "make sure that the flu shot is mercury free" before offering up their arm to the needle.
Rubella Vaccine – According to Dr. Bob, "every mom is tested to see if they are susceptible. If you test negative (meaning you don't have the Rubella immunities), the nurse is going to give you a Rubella Vaccine after you give birth to protect you from catching it during your next pregnancy." Dr. Sears had this word of caution about the vaccine, "If you have a history of arthritis and have a lot of arthritis in your family, you should strongly consider not getting a Rubella shot. There's a warning on the label that the vaccine can cause severe arthritic side effects." Instead, he advises moms in that situation to stay away from young children during pregnancy and to be cautious about the environments/people that she is exposed to.
For more information about the pros and cons of various vaccines for children, check out The Vaccine Book (read my full review here). It's a comprehensive resource from a trusted source - and you won't regret the $11 or so dollars that you spend on the book.