When Zika hit the scene last summer it had the whole world freaking out. The virus is no joke, it causes birth defects and even some health problems in infants. Now that we have a lot more information about this virus, we are better able to tell you whether or not you should turn that vacation into a staycation.
Should you vacay while pregnant?
Traveling is great and if you’re pregnant then you might want to check off some bucket list destinations before that baby pops out and your travel time turns into toddler time. But should you be worried about Zika?
Yes, you should. Traveling to places where the virus’s transmission is ongoing is a risk that, in our opinion, is not worth taking. Check the CDC website for which locations are currently having a Zika outbreak, if your destination is not listed, then you’re good to go. If your location is listed, then maybe rethink your travel plans.
Looking to get knocked up? Maybe do it domestically.
If you’re planning on making a baby then maybe a destination conception isn’t the best idea. The first trimester is the most important time to take care of your baby and it’s an incredibly hard time because most women don’t even know they’re pregnant during that time.
If you do travel to an area that is infected then women should wait at least eight weeks and men need to wait six months before bumping uglies.
What if the type of mosquito that carries the Zika virus is where you’re traveling to but there’s no Zika, should you still be worried?
We now know what type of mosquitos carry the virus, the Aedes aegypti and the Aedes albopictus (duh says all the entomologists.) These mosquitoes have been popping up in the U.S. where we have never seen them before. Does that mean they’re all carrying Zika?
No, if there is no outbreak then the risk is super low. Still use common sense though, wear bug spray and don’t have a mosquito bite contest with your friends but other than that, you should be fine.
Let’s be real, what are the chances that you will get Zika?
Well, we can’t say. If you’re the type of person who has mosquito bite contests with your friends then your risk might be higher than others so it’s impossible to give an exact percentage.
What we do know, according to studies, is that five to fifteen percent of women who get Zika while pregnant actually have babies with birth defects or brain damage. So even if you catch Zika the risks are low, but they are still risks and the consequences are very real.
Is Zika planning a sequel this summer?
Zika will definitely be around this summer but most likely it will not be as big as last year. The number of infections is likely to go down this year because after you catch Zika once, you can’t catch it again. Plus a lot of people will read this very informative article which is bound to drop the number of infections even further.