Flu in an infant can be a scary experience. These infants suffer a higher rate of complications compared with older babies who have the flu. However, pregnant women who get a flu vaccine give their babies some protection, according to a study published Monday.
Babies under 6 months of age are born with what appears to be some natural protection from flu passed on by the mother's antibodies. However this natural immunity isn't totally protective and pregnant women are widely encouraged to get an annual flu shot to protect themselves and their babies. In the study, researchers found that babies whose mothers were vaccinated during pregnancy had a 41% lower risk of flu infection and a 39% lower risk of hospitalization from flu-like illness compared with babies whose mothers were not vaccinated.