Many women develop strep throat during pregnancy, so you are not the only one questioning if it will affect the baby. However, there is no association between strep throat and pregnancy if the illness is treated adequately. Strep throat is a highly contagious bacteria that affects the tonsils and throat. Because there are many strains, some cases are more serious than others. With a prompt treatment, complication such as rheumatic fever, kidney problems, ear infections and sinusitis can be prevented.
A sore throat is not a clear sign of strep throat. Furthermore, if it is accompanied by a running nose and sneezing, it is probably just a viral infection. The main symptoms of strep throat are a sudden and intense sore throat, high fever, enlarged lymph nodes and white sports on the throat and tonsils. It is important to check in with your doctor and have a strep test to confirm the infection. In case of a positive result, the health care professional will give you an antibiotic treatment.
Strep throat and pregnancy is not an uncommon combination, so you will receive antibiotics that are harmless for the baby. The most common drugs used are penicillin, amoxixillin and cephalexin. However, you must strictly follow the doctor’s instructions about the dosage. An insufficient intake of antibiotics can cause a recurrence and an overdose can be harmful to the baby and mother. Penicillin is an antibiotic that has no negative impact on pregnancy in women who are not allergic to it. Cephalexin does not cause harm to the fetus because it does not cross the placenta. However, there are not enough studies to confirm that 100 percent. There are no reports of adverse effect of amoxicilin, although it is only recommended when the benefits outweigh the risks.
Managing strep throat and pregnancy
Strep throat home remedies can be used as a complementary treatment to the antibiotics, in order to alleviate the symptoms. Pregnant women can take recommended doses of antipyretic, a fever reducer and paracetamol, a pain reliever. However, aspirin is not recommended. Gargling several times a day with warm water mixed with salt can alleviate the pain. Make sure you drink plenty of liquids and teas such as chamomile tea and lemon tea with honey and cinnamon. If you properly manage strep throat and pregnancy, you will make a quicker recovery.
Group B streptococcus versus strep throat
Many women mistake strep throat with Group B streptococcus, a bacteria that causes an infection in the rectal or vaginal area that the mother can pass to the child during delivery. However, most women are screened in the 35th week for group B streptococcus and even if they have it is not necessarily passed to the baby. If your doctor mentions strep throat, you don’t have to worry because it is not related to the Group B streptococcus.