Vaccines | Fit Pregnancy


Does Your Baby Need the Flu Vaccine?

In a word, yes. A study recently published in Pediatrics looked at 290 cases of childhood flu and found that the vaccination reduced the number of cases by about half in children 6 to 59 months old. What's more, the study showed that the vaccine is effective even if it doesn't perfectly match the strain of flu circulating during a particular season. Keep in mind that your baby must be at least 6 months old to receive the vaccine and that, if she's previously unvaccinated, she needs a follow-up shot at least one month later to be fully protected.

Make Shots Easier On Your Baby

It's hard to know who feels worse at vaccination appointments: you or your child. Although you can't eliminate the pain entirely, you can take these steps to keep your little one as comfortable as possible:

Chickenpox Vaccine: Who, When & Why

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recently issued a revised recommendation stating that children should receive two doses of the varicella, or chickenpox, vaccine. In addition to the standard first shot, given between 12 and 15 months, the AAP is advising a new booster shot, between 4 and 6 years of age, to prevent "breakthrough" infections.

Decoding Autism

Worry has always been a side effect of pregnancy. But one anxiety--will my baby be normal?--has recently come to include a new concern: autism. First identified in 1943, the disorder is commanding unprecedented interest, mostly because of the reported rise in its incidence, but also because its origins lie in the fascinating crux between genes and the environment. "Autism is primarily genetic, but something beyond genes is also involved," says pediatric neurologist Andrew Zimmerman, M.D., an associate professor of neurology at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine