Pneumococcus, toxoplasmosis, Lyme disease - what do you need to know about these diseases?

Pneumococcus, toxoplasmosis, Lyme disease - despite the more and more frequent social campaigns about childhood diseases - for many young mothers these names are still completely abstract.

See the movie: "Runny nose in an infant"

They pay for our ignorance later with the suffering of their children. So let's try to present the most important and dangerous diseases, about the existence of which every woman, both planning children and already being a happy mother, should know.

1. Toxoplasmosis

It can be very dangerous - especially when pregnant. In adults, it is usually asymptomatic, which is why gynecological care before and during pregnancy is so important, as well as performing tests recommended by gynecologists.

A weakening of the body, a slight fever, flu-like symptoms or a rash can happen to every pregnant woman and is often a completely innocent ailment. To be sure that the unborn baby is safe, see a doctor and, if necessary, perform an antibody test.

This applies especially to cat lovers and ladies whose favorite form of spending their free time is gardening. Toxoplasmosis is one of the "dirty hands diseases", as most infections are caused by failure to follow the rules of hygiene.

During the first trimester, this disease can cause a miscarriage. If you become infected after the 12th week, your baby may be born prematurely, underweight, with visual impairment or with persistent neurological problems.

To make sure that the pregnancy is safe, serological tests should be performed to determine IgM and IgG antibodies in the blood. If the result of both is negative, it means that the expectant mother has not encountered this parasite before and therefore has no immunity to this pathogen. The test should be repeated after 3 months.

2. Herpes

We know far too little about herpes and we usually associate it with a small sores around the mouth. Meanwhile, infection with herpes can lead to dramatic complications.

- Infection of a newborn baby with herpes virus (HSV) during delivery can lead to serious disturbances of the central nervous system and, consequently, even death. This infection is caused by the genital herpes virus (HSV2) - explains Katarzyna Schmidt, biotechnologist, diagnostician at the DNA Research Center.

- The risk of infection of the newborn by the herpes labialis (HSV1) virus, which is responsible for the so-called "cold" on the lips does not occur, as long as it is not transferred to the genital area. However, it should be remembered that a pregnant woman has an increased risk of infection with herpes labialis. In the event of its appearance, a doctor should be consulted to adjust the appropriate treatment - he advises.

3. Chlamydia

Increasingly, chlamydial infections are diagnosed when looking for the cause of the inability to become pregnant or its termination. How can I prevent infection?

Chlamydia trachomatis is the most common bacterium that is caught through sexual contact. It causes inflammation of the cervix or urethra. If left untreated, it can also lead to infertility and miscarriage or fetal malformations in pregnant women. It can also be passed on to the baby during childbirth and lead to, inter alia, for acute purulent conjunctivitis or pneumonia.

- Chlamydia trachomatis infection can be asymptomatic and many people are unaware that it may be a carrier. Therefore, every woman planning a pregnancy or during pregnancy should have a test for the presence of this bacterium in the body to reduce the risk of infection of the fetus, and if it is detected, start immediate treatment - advises Katarzyna Schmidt.

4. Cytomegaly

This disease is often asymptomatic. It is also one of the most common factors of intrauterine infections in all newborns. Infection of the fetus occurs through the penetration of the virus:

  • Through the placenta (congenital infection) in mothers who were infected before birth
  • Following the transfusion of CMV-infected blood to the newborn,
  • By contact with the birth canal of an infected mother during childbirth (perinatal infection),
  • After birth, along with mother's milk.

The most dangerous thing for a baby is cytomegaly, which develops until the 20th week of pregnancy - it can cause microcephaly and intracranial calcification. In the second half of pregnancy, the infection leads to inflammation of the liver or lungs or hearing loss.

Cytomegaly may also result in intrauterine growth retardation, jaundice, and enlargement of the spleen and liver. Ok. 25 percent infected newborns die, and the rest may suffer from mental and physical development disorders. Symptoms may also not appear until school.

Therefore, every mother who cares about the health of her baby should, at the planning stage of pregnancy, or during its course, have a blood test to check for antibodies. In the event of CMV, the doctor will administer immunoglobulins to protect the unborn child against infection.

5. Pneumococci

Since these microscopic bacteria are transmitted by airborne droplets, a sneeze or cough of an infected person is enough to attack the airways of another person. They can cause pneumonia, meningitis and even sepsis.

Mothers of babies who have decided to leave their children in a nursery or kindergarten should be especially sensitive to the risk of pneumococcal infection. Spending 4 hours in a larger group of peers increases the risk of becoming a carrier of bacteria by up to 62%. That is why preventive vaccinations are so important to protect the child from infection.

Tags:  Preschooler Childbirth Pregnancy-Planning