Can Zika affect babies and children?

Can Zika affect babies and children?

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If you are pregnant in a Zika-infected area, the advice is that your baby should be tested after the birth, even if all appears well. There have been some cases of babies with hearing and sight problems in these areas, so it’s worth checking.

Children can catch Zika, but generally it’s a mild illness and it doesn’t seem to cause any long-term problems for them. If you live in a Zika infection area, or you travel there, you can protect your children in the same way as you protect yourself. Try to get rid of any places where mosquitoes might breed and use an insect repellent on their skin. An insect repellent with up to 50% of DEET is safe for children and babies over two months. If you’re taking your baby out in a pram or pushchair, it’s worth using an insecticide spray before you put your baby in, so spray the pram or pushchair, put on an insect net, and leave it to settle for a few minutes before you put your baby in there. Keep the insecticide net over the baby when you’re out and about, and if possible, avoid going out between mid-morning and mid-afternoon/early dusk because that’s the time when this mosquito bites.

At home, make sure you use window screens or door screens to keep mosquitoes out. If you put your baby down to sleep, use an insecticide-treated bed net over the cot or bed, especially if they’re having a daytime nap, because this is the time when that mosquito tends to bite. Current advice is that Zika is not a problem if you’re breastfeeding, and you should continue to breast feed because that’s the best for your baby.

Watch the video: Brazils Parents Coping with Zika Babies (June 2022).