Whooping cough can be extremely dangerous for babies. They may get pneumonia or develop brain damage and could even die from the disease. Nearly 170 infants end up in the hospital with whooping cough every year.
Infants get vaccinated against whooping cough. However, they cannot get their first vaccinations until they are two months old. That means that newborns are not yet protected against whooping cough during the first few months. And that is precisely when they are most vulnerable.
How can you protect your baby?
You can get vaccinated against whooping cough yourself during your pregnancy. That ensures that your baby will be protected from the moment they enter the world. You can get the shot from the 22-second week of your pregnancy. That is why it is known as the 22-week vaccination.
After you are vaccinated, your body makes antibodies. These antibodies are shared with your unborn baby via the placenta. As a result, your baby will have enough antibodies to protect against whooping cough for the first few months, until your baby gets his or her first vaccination. The first vaccination for your baby will therefore not take place at 2 months but at 3 months after birth.
The 22-week vaccination is part of the national vaccination program and is therefore free. Go to www.22wekenprik.nl to find out where you can get the vaccination in your area.