Passing on infections from mother to child

    • Sexually transmitted infections

    • You can infect the unborn baby if an STI is not treated, which can be dangerous for the baby. If you know you have an STI, talk to your healthcare provider or midwife. They can help you to take the proper steps to protect the unborn child.

      Most STIs can be treated during pregnancy without any danger to the unborn baby, except for hepatitis B. In the case of hepatitis B, the baby will be vaccinated after birth.

      Herpes in the vagina in the last three months of pregnancy can be dangerous to the unborn child. Contact your midwife or healthcare provider immediately.

      A pregnant woman is always tested for several STIs during the prenatal clinic (hospital visit for pregnant women). This is one of the reasons why you must attend a prenatal clinic when pregnant.

      If you want a test for a specific STI, you have to ask your midwife or healthcare provider.

    • HIV

    • If you have HIV, you can still have healthy children:

      • A pregnant woman with HIV has to take medicines during pregnancy and delivery. More than 99% of babies of HIV infected mothers are born without HIV.
      • The baby will usually be born by caesarean section. The baby can also be born naturally if the doctor thinks it is safe.
      • The baby is given medicines after birth.
      • The mother may not breastfeed her child. The mother will bottle feed the baby. There are other ways to bond with your baby.