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Prevent to Protect: Prevent Infections for Baby’s Protection.

Prevent to Protect Infographic


Prevent to Protect: Prevent Infections for Baby’s Protection. [PDF – 566 KB]


Title: Pregnant or Thinking About Getting Pregnant? Prevent to Protect: Prevent Infections for Baby’s Protection.

Some infections before and during pregnancy can hurt you and your baby. They can cause serious illness, birth defects, and lifelong disabilities, such as hearing loss or learning problems. Here are some examples of how you can reduce your risk of getting infection during pregnancy to help protect your baby.

Properly prepare food.

  • Wash your hands before and after preparing food.
  • Do not eat raw or runny eggs or raw sprouts.
  • Avoid unpasteurized (raw) milk and cheese, and other foods made from them.

Talk to your healthcare provider.

  • Talk to your healthcare provider about what you can do to prevent infections such as Zika virus.
  • Make sure that you are up-to-date with vaccinations (shots) before getting pregnant.
  • Talk to your healthcare provider about vaccinations that you should receive during pregnancy.

Protect yourself from animals and insects known to carry diseases such as Zika virus.

  • When mosquitoes are active:
    • Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants when outside.
    • Use Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) registered insect repellents with one of the following active ingredients: DEET, picaridin, IR3535, or oil of lemon eucalyptus (para-menthane-3,8-diol).
  • Stay away from wild or pet rodents, live poultry; lizards and tur tles, and do not clean cat litter boxes while pregnant.

Maintain good hygiene.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water especially;
    • Before preparing or eating foods
    • After handling raw meat, raw eggs, or unwashed vegetables.
    • After being around or touching pets, and other animals
    • After changing diapers or wiping runny noses
  • Do not put a young child’s food, utensils, drinking cups,

For more information on preventing birth defects, please visit:


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