How does the Zika virus affect babies after they are born, along with older kids? Is it an immediate danger to them?It is quite important to know that Zika virus does threaten pregnant women and their fetuses by devastating birth defects. For instance, in term of an infection, the placenta is unable to protect the fetus. Thus, instead of nourishing the growing embryo, it is likely to support the infection’s growth as well as journey into the developing brain. In the UK, the birth defects of 6 kids and fetuses have been recently linked to the virus. According to many authorities, the mamas-to-be were infected during their pregnancy.
Understand the danger of Zika
In general, Zika virus may cause some mild symptoms. These include a fever, red eyes, rash, nausea or vomiting, joint pain, and so on. All of these may be resolved on their own in just a week. Yet, not all of infected people will suffer from all these signs. The birth defects in unborn children and fetuses linked to Zika usually transpires when the carrying mothers were infected during their pregnancy. Thus, it is dangerous to known that the virus can cause birth defects in babies, namely microcephaly. This may happen even when they are still on their moms’ uterus. It is rare for the infection to cause such type of birth defect. However, health experts still advise expectant mothers to take measures to avoid contracting Zika.
According to the CDC, earlier this year, there is recently enough evidence to have a conclusion that Zika virus infection is a cause of microcephaly during pregnancy. So, what is microcephaly? It is just a condition where a child’s head is much smaller than normal, because of an underdeveloped brain. Further, the condition may also cause developmental delays, problems with movement and balance, intellectual disabilities, vision & hearing loss as well as difficulty eating and swallowing. Those who are born with microcephaly tend to deal with these difficulties during their lifetimes. In the most severe form, this condition is also life threatening.
Apart from microcephaly, the Zika virus is also able to lead to eye defects and impaired growth in kids whose mamas became infected with the virus during pregnancy. A lot of scientists are now studying other potential health problems caused by the virus infection during pregnancy.
Some important things to keep in mind
How does the Zika virus affect babies? It is not hard to answer this question! On the whole, the main way that a pregnant woman may contract the virus is through a mosquito bite. But, it was recently discovered that Zika could also be spread via semen. As per the CDC, Zika virus infection in women who aren’t pregnant doesn’t pose a risk for microcephaly in future pregnancies when the virus has been cleared from the blood. Because there’s no vaccine against the virus, expectant mothers are encouraged not to travel to areas where Zika is present. Moms-to-be who live in these areas should be careful! It is advisable for them to use mosquito repellent, wear long sleeves, and have screens on their windows and doors.
How about its effect on infants as well as older kids? Is it an immediate danger to them? As per many experts, there are not any reports, which suggest that Zika could affect infants or older children in the worse possible way. Of course, there is still an ongoing research about how Zika can cause danger to children. Yet, it has been unknown if there is not any long-term impact on infants and children. So far, there is no evidence that the virus may attack children’s brains as it does to fetuses.
How does the Zika virus affect babies? What should do?
Governments have recommended women to delay getting pregnant until there is an effective method. Experts believe that Zika outbreak has a relation to a broader set of complications during pregnancy. Some examples are stillbirth, miscarriage, premature birth, and eye problems. According to CDC (the US Centres for Disease Control), Zika lingers in the blood within a week and may be spread by sexual intercourse.
How does the Zika virus affect babies? In fact, the virus will not cause infections in a kid who is conceived after it is cleared from the blood. In addition, there is also no evidence that Zika virus infection may pose a risk of birth defects in the future pregnancies.
As per the WHO, couples should practice safer sex (using condom) or abstain for at least 8 weeks if they are returning from Zika affected regions. Does your husband planning a pregnancy develop Zika symptoms? Then, this period of safe sex or abstinence should last 6 months.
How to protect our young beloved for the best result?
If you get pregnant or long to become pregnant in the near future, it is better to avoid traveling to areas where there is actively the virus. In case you have some symptoms of Zika, don’t forget to consult with a health care provider about how to test for. She can advise you to delay pregnancy. The following are other extra tips you should take into consideration:
- Both men and women are quite able to transmit Zika virus via sexual activity, even including oral sex. Always use condoms or dental dams when taking part in sexual intercourse.
- In case you still would like to travel to affected areas, make sure to bring an ample supply of mosquito repellant with you. The repellant which contains a chemical, called DEET in concentrations of 40% or higher, is often most effective. Of course, don’t forget to carry long clothing and mosquito netting.
- Treat your clothing and gear with permethrin.
- If you are using sunscreen, it is better to apply sunscreen before applying insect repellent.
- While staying in an affected region, you should close all windows and window screens when sleeping. Or try to protect yourself with mosquito netting.
- Cover exposed skin by wearing pants and long-sleeved shirts.
- Stay away from mosquito-breeding sites, such as bodies of standing water.
- Always take anti-mosquito-bite precautions around the clock. Many mosquitoes that transmit Zika are not easy to avoid totally since they may bite during the day, opposed to in the evening only.
So, how does the Zika virus affect babies? This depends on many conditions. While zika can cause dangers to unborn babies, there is no evidence that the virus can affect the older children and future pregnancies.