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Common Infections During Pregnancy

Common Infections During Pregnancy

Pregnancy is an exciting but sometimes, stressful time for everyone involved. Expecting families need to watch out for signs and symptoms of common infections that occur when the mother is pregnant.

If you suspect that you have an infection, see your doctor about the possibility that you have an illness.

Infections can range from mildly irritating to excruciatingly painful. Some infections can be life-threatening to both the mother and the unborn child if left untreated.

Female doctor meeting with pregnant patient.

What’s The Most Common Pregnancy Infection?

Urinary Tract Infections are perhaps the most common and can be one of the most painful infections that women can get during pregnancy. This type of infection can lead to premature labor and painful inflammation if not treated properly.

Does Every UTI Need To Be Treated During Pregnancy?

All stages of a Urinary Tract Infections need to be treated in order to prevent complications.

Antibiotics are the most common form of treatment.

Can A UTI Cause A Miscarriage?

A UTI in itself does not cause a miscarriage. But you may experience side effects from a UTI or complications from a UTI that could cause a miscarriage if not treated properly.

Infections In Pregnancy. Pregnant Lady In Medical Face Mask Gesturing Stop Posing Over Gray Background In Studio

Other Infections During Pregnancy

Bacterial vaginosis occurs in approximately 16% of all pregnancies. The infection can be transmitted to the fetus and possibly cause the death of the baby. Symptoms include a smelly but non-painful discharge from the vaginal area. 

While the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) does not recommend women be screened for bacterial vaginosis in general if you have a predisposition for premature labor, you should be checked for it early on in your pregnancy. The most common treatment is oral metronidazole.

The cause of BV is not well known, but it is linked to having intercourse.

It is also easier for pregnant women to contract a bacterial infection as pregnancy hormones make it easier for bacteria to collect in the vagina.

How Do You Know If You Have A Bacterial Infection During Pregnancy?

If you have BV during pregnancy, you’ll notice a white or grey discharge that has a fishy odor. The aroma usually gets worse after intercourse. You may also experience pain, itching, or burning in or around the vagina.

Infections They Test For During Pregnancy

Near the end of your pregnancy, you will be tested for Group B Streptococcus (GBS). The result of this is important to know and will play a part in some treatment you may need during labor and birth. This could also change the plan of treatment needed for your new baby as well.

Group B Strep can be life-threatening to the fetus and should be taken very seriously. It is estimated that as many as 25% of mothers carry the disease but only 1% show symptoms, so this disease is very important to be diagnosed as it can be a real danger to your unborn baby.

Your baby could manifest the disease as respiratory distress or apnea when it is firstborn and could lead to vision loss and learning disabilities later in life.

The CDC strongly suggests that all women in their 35th to 37th weeks of gestation get checked for Group B Streptococcus. If your test comes back positive, treatment includes an intravenous form of penicillin during labor. Your doctor will know how to proceed with treatment options.

Pregnant woman posing with a medicaments in her hands.

More Pregnancy Infections To Be Aware Of

Listeriosis is twenty times more common in pregnant women than in women who aren’t and is most common in the third trimester.

Listeriosis is transmitted through contaminated food such as meat. Though not as common as in the past, outbreaks, and deaths still occur.

If your newborn has listeriosis, the mortality rate is 50%, so listeriosis is very serious. 

How Do You Prevent Listeriosis?

The best way to avoid or prevent listeriosis is to thoroughly cook meat, wash raw vegetables with water before cooking or eating, and wash your hands and all utensils that have touched uncooked food.

Strong antibiotics are used for treatment.

It is important to diagnose infections as quickly as possible in pregnancy, so if you suspect you have become infected with a disease, you should consult a doctor as soon as possible. Always seek the professional assistance of your licensed physician for sound diagnosis and treatment.

Can An Infection During Pregnancy Harm The Baby?

Depending on the type of infection and the severity, some infections can harm the baby. So, if you think you have any symptoms of any of these infections, or others not mentioned, you need to let your medical professional know as soon as possible.

You should be seen by your medical professional, tested and treated as soon as possible if necessary.

Get lots of rest and good sleep. We suggest using a pregnancy pillow when possible.

Doctor explaining medical test results to the patient, he is pointing on the clipboard with a pen, healthcare concept.

What Infection During Pregnancy Causes Birth Defects?

There are a few infections that may cause birth defects in your baby. Some of these infections include Cytomegalovirus (CMV), Varicella, Rubella, Toxoplasmosis, and Lymphocytic Choriomeningitis (LCMV).

Are Yeast Infections Common During Pregnancy?

Yeast infections are very common during pregnancy because pregnancy hormones are constantly causing pH balance changes in the vagina.

Yeast Infection Symptoms

  • vaginal itching in and around the vagina
  • thicker white discharge similar to cottage cheese texture