How to avoid prenatal infections? a problem-solving guide.

International Prenatal Infection Prevention Month

Prenatal infections:

February is International Prenatal Infection Prevention Month. It aims to raise awareness about preventing infections during pregnancy.

Prenatal infections are infections that can affect pregnant women and their unborn babies. Some of these infections can cause serious complications, such as miscarriage, preterm birth, birth defects, and lifelong disabilities. Approx 60% women have atleast one infection during pregnancy. Therefore, it is important to take steps to prevent prenatal infections and protect your baby’s health.

Specific Infections to Be Aware Of during pregnancy

Some infections don’t cause any problem but some infections during pregnancy are particularly dangerous. So it is important to visit gynecologist near you. 

      • Bacterial vaginosis: Can cause preterm labor.
      •  Sexually transmitted infections (syphilis, HIV, herpes, chlamydia, gonorrhea, and hepatitis B.) : May cause problems from preterm delivery to infant infections.
      • Toxoplasmosis: Can result in disabilities such as blindness and intellectual impairments.
      • Cytomegalovirus
      • Rubella infection: can result in congenital malformation in fetus
      • Malaria
      • Hepatitis: Can be transmitted to the infant.
      • Asymptomatic bacteriuria- UTI, preterm labour 

Prenatal Care to avoid infection during pregnancy:

  • Visit doctor before planning pregnancy and get vaccination like Rubella, hepatitis B vaccination.
  • Regular visits and checkup during pregnancy with gynecologist near you. Prenatal pregnancy visits can detect infections early and treat any problem like urinary tract infection during pregnancy.
  • The recommended schedule for prenatal visits includes:
    • Once a month from till 28th week.
    • Every two weekly from weeks 28 through 36 weeks
    • Weekly after 36 weeks  until birth.
  • Early diagnosis and treatment reduce the risk of harm to both mother and child.

To Learn More About Pregnancy Care

Prevention of prenatal infections:

  • Prenatal infection Prevention in pregnancyNutrition: Proper diet and food handling practices are essential.
  • Avoid risky behaviors: Limit exposure to potential infections.
  • Environmental precautions: Take care with soil, water, and pet hygiene.
  • Drink boiled or filtered water.
  • Vaccination during pregnancy: protect from some common and dangerous infections, such as flu, Rubella, Hepatitis B and whooping cough. Talk to your doctor about which vaccines you need before and during pregnancy.
  • Prevent insect bites. Some insects, such as mosquitoes and ticks, can carry diseases that can harm you and your baby, such as malaria and dengue. Use insect repellent that is safe for pregnant women, wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants when outside, and avoid travel to areas with malaria or other outbreaks.
  • Avoid undercooked or raw meats. Meats that are not cooked well can contain harmful bacteria, such as Listeria and Toxoplasma, that can cause infections in you and your baby.
  • Avoid unpasteurized milk and cheese. Unpasteurized dairy products can also contain harmful bacteria, such as Listeria, that can cause infections.
  • Wash your hands often. Handwashing is one of the best ways to prevent infections and germs from spreading. Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds after using the bathroom, touching raw meat, eggs, or vegetables, preparing food and eating, gardening or touching dirt or soil, handling pets, being around people who are sick, getting saliva on your hands, caring for or playing with children, or changing diapers.
  • Get tested for sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Some STIs can cause problems for you and your baby, such as syphilis, HIV, herpes, chlamydia, gonorrhea, and hepatitis B. If you have an STI, get treated as soon as possible to prevent complications.

To read more resources

Leave a Reply