Herpes simplex virus is known to be contagious and can be transmitted through direct contact. For instance, children can acquire this virus by coming into contact with infected adults. Whether it is cold sores or genital herpes, after you get infected, it stays for life. However, if you are pregnant, there is some risk of complication. Since this condition is devastating, you are advised to undertake certain preventive measures, which reduce the risk of infection.
Protecting the baby
If you acquire herpes before becoming pregnant, you are unlikely to transmit it to the infant. This is because antibodies offer protection to the baby from acquiring herpes. Also, doctors can be of help by providing suitable and proper medications. If a mother is infected during pregnancy, there is a risk of contracting herpes. This is because the mother does not have antibodies, which can act against the herpes virus.
Complications during pregnancy
If you are an infected mother, you are likely to experience some complications during pregnancy. You should note that genital herpes causes premature birth or even miscarriage. There is also a risk that the infected mother passes this virus to the baby at birth. Since there is no cure for this virus, a mother can easily pass it during an outbreak. However, a lot of things depend on right care with regular visits and proper medications to the doctors to ensure your baby is safe. You should inform your doctor about your herpes.
How it affects a baby
If you are giving birth during an outbreak, then there is a high risk of transmitting it to the infant. You can also transmit herpes to the baby through kissing if you have cold sores. However, in very rare cases there is a transmission when an infected person touches the baby. In the U.S. alone, it is estimated that over 30% of pregnant women have herpes. However, less than 2000 infants acquire the virus. Also, most women give birth to healthy looking babies.
It takes about ten weeks for a woman to develop antibodies that prevent infection of herpes to the newborn. A pregnant woman should do all she can to prevent infecting her baby. First, you should let the doctor know about your condition and offer you appropriate medications during an outbreak. This can be very effective during pregnancy. Ensure you engage in safe sex to prevent contracting herpes simplex. Always, remember that this is one of the diseases that are contagious and do not have a cure.