Ok, We're Going to Say it... Zika.
As you all know, we love the Mayan Riviera and travelling in all of Mexico. But we must mention the danger of the Zika virus for women who are pregnant, or thinking about becoming pregnant. In 2015, Zika virus outbreaks occurred in areas of Africa, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific Islands.
By the middle of 2015, there were confirmed cases in Brazil. And the virus is spreading. The Zika virus is spread by mosquitoes, which are EVERYWHERE in the tropical regions of Mexico, Central and South America. Mosquito-borne transmission of Zika virus have been reported as far North as the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, and America Samoa. The disease is suspected to cause congenital microcephaly (a very severe birth defect) if it is contracted by pregnant women. Even more unfortunate, an infected man may be able to pass it to his uninfected wife/partner through sexual relations.
If you are pregnant, or you may become pregnant, it is advisable that you delay travel to any Zika-infected areas. It is still unknown if the Zika virus can cause future problems for a woman even after all the symptoms of the virus have resolved. Here are the interim guidelines from the CDC until we know more.
In our case, we were very lucky--we came back to the U.S. to have our baby last year, and my wife had a tubal ligation (we have 3 kids now, so we are happy with our little caravan), so the threat to us from Zika less severe, since the possibility of pregnancy gone.
If you absolutely CANNOT delay travel to a Zika-infected area, then please be careful! Make sure that you cover up, wear repellent with DEET, use mosquito netting, and see a doctor to get tested when you return home.
Be safe, everyone!
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Just a middle-class dad and mom with three young kids, looking to escape the rat race. This is our journey!
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