Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are a major public health concern affecting people of all genders and demographics worldwide. However, today, we will focus on the prevalence of STIs among pregnant women and explore ways to prevent and treat them.
Pregnant women, like anyone else, can contract STIs through unprotected sex, sharing sharp objects, oral sex, and more. To prevent STIs, it’s recommended to be in a long-term, mutually monogamous relationship with a partner who has been tested and has negative STI test results. Using latex condoms the right way every time you have sex can also help prevent STIs.
If pregnant women are already infected with STIs, treatment options vary depending on the type of STI. Antibiotics are generally safe during pregnancy and can effectively treat and cure STIs such as chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, trichomoniasis, and bacterial vaginosis. However, STIs caused by viruses, such as genital herpes, hepatitis B, or HIV, cannot be cured. Still, antiviral medications and other preventive measures can reduce the risk of passing the infection to the baby. Pregnant women or those considering pregnancy should get tested for STIs and take the necessary steps to protect themselves and their babies.
A real-life story highlights the importance of following medical advice and prescriptions when dealing with STIs during pregnancy. In 2022, a pregnant woman with an incompetent cervix, needed a cerclage for support and had contracted an STI. After undergoing surgery and treatment, she contracted another STI because she had intercourse against her doctor’s advice. Tragically, she lost her baby. This story underscores the need for women to follow medical advice and prescriptions carefully to ensure they receive the best possible treatment.
While foundations like ours can do their part, parents also have a crucial role in preventing STIs among young people. By working together and with God’s help, we can save many more lives.