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Ninety-two Bree Pennie will forever be a & # 39; debt burden & # 39; carry with her, after her youngest child, when she was pregnant, contracted a heartbreaking common virus

Twenty-two Bree Pennie wonders if her young son could walk if she hadn't sucked her older daughter's doll to clean it.

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Maybe if she didn't drink from Dylan's bottle, her little brother Dax could still talk.

Or if she would make another toast instead of finishing her elder's breakfast, perhaps her youngest could feed herself today.

And maybe, if she rejected those beautiful but sloppy toddler kisses, life would be different?

Ninety-two Bree Pennie will forever be a & # 39; debt burden & # 39; carry with her, after her youngest child, when she was pregnant, contracted a heartbreaking common virus

Ninety-two Bree Pennie will forever be a & # 39; debt burden & # 39; carry with her, after her youngest child, when she was pregnant, contracted a heartbreaking common virus

Bree does not know for certain how she contracted a devastating but common virus while she was 20 weeks pregnant with Dax and left him severely disabled.

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The 36-year-old from Burrill Lake, NSW may have contracted Cytomegalovirus from her older daughter Dylan, but says she will forever have a & # 39; debt burden & # 39; will wear.

Bree now gives a warning to women, especially women with young children, to be extra careful during pregnancy.

& # 39; I cannot be sure that I have entered into the contract with my daughter, we have never had her tested, & # 39; she said to FEMAIL. & # 39;

& # 39; We already felt that I am carrying a burden that I passed on the virus to Dax, that burden did not have to be shared.

& # 39; She will know her CMV status in time and whether she has been exposed in the past. However, this is probably the reason that I have contracted CMV. & # 39;

The virus is most contagious in children under the age of two and Dylan was 18 months old when it struck.

& # 39; She was very social in playgroups, daycare centers, and kids' gym, and later in my pregnancy she went to daycare & # 39 ;, said Bree.

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& # 39; She was often unwell, like most children of this age, with a snot nose. & # 39;

The virus left her son, who is now four, with various permanent disabilities and is unable to walk, talk, feed or use herself.

"We have a beautiful boy, he has a smile that will melt your heart, a smile that is contagious, and determination that will move a mountain," she said.

"We have a beautiful boy, he has a smile that will melt your heart, a smile that is contagious, and determination that will move a mountain," she said.

"We have a beautiful boy, he has a smile that will melt your heart, a smile that is contagious, and determination that will move a mountain," she said.

"We have a beautiful boy, he has a smile that will melt your heart, a smile that is contagious, and determination that will move a mountain," she said.

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"He has microcephaly (incomplete brain development), cerebral palsy, polymicrogyria (abnormally thick cerebral cortex), hearing loss and developmental delay," Bree said.

& # 39; We have a beautiful boy, he has a smile that will melt your heart, a smile that is contagious and determination that will move a mountain.

& # 39; But the reality is that his needs are high, he is getting bigger and our backs are getting weaker. & # 39;

Bree had no previous exposure to CMV and therefore had no immunity to the virus.

& # 39; Now that I know what I know, there are many things that I would have done differently, "she said.

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& # 39; I would have made myself a new piece of toast instead of finishing my infant's leftovers when I ran out the door.

& # 39; I would have asked for cheeky kisses instead of my dear little girl's messy lip cushion. & # 39;

This is Bree & # 39; s 20-week echo, which was probably around the same time she spread the virus to her son Dax

This is Bree & # 39; s 20-week echo, which was probably around the same time she spread the virus to her son Dax

This is Bree & # 39; s 20-week echo, which was probably around the same time she spread the virus to her son Dax

What is Cytomegalovirus (CMV)?

Congenital Cytomegalovirus is the leading cause of viral birth defects in Australia.

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Studies in Australia have shown that around six babies out of 1,000 live births will have a congenital CMV infection and that one or two of those six babies (about 1 in 1,000 babies in total) have permanent limitations to varying degrees.

These may include hearing loss, loss of vision, small head size, cerebral palsy, developmental delay or intellectual disability, and in rare cases death.

Sometimes the virus can be reactivated while a woman is pregnant, but reactivation usually causes no problems for the woman or her unborn baby.

Dax with his older sister Dylan, who is a huge help when it comes to her brother's care

Dax with his older sister Dylan, who is a huge help when it comes to her brother's care

Dax with his older sister Dylan, who is a huge help when it comes to her brother's care

How do you prevent it?

* Wash hands often with soap and running water for at least 15 seconds and dry them thoroughly. This should especially be done after close contact with young children, changing diapers, blowing noses, feeding a young child and handling children's toys, dummies / pacifiers.

* Do not share food, drink, utensils or toothbrushes with young children.

* Avoid contact with saliva when kissing a child.

* Use simple detergent and water to clean toys, counter tops and other surfaces that come in contact with children's urine, mucus or saliva.

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& # 39; I had more extra dummy & # 39; s packed instead of sucking the dirt away after it fell to the floor.

Grapp Funnily enough, I never realized that the germs in my daughter's mouth were potentially more harmful than the dirt on the floor.

& # 39; I would get a new cup if I wasn't sure what mine was and I would wash my hands more often. & # 39;

To reduce the risk of exposure of pregnant women, doctors recommend early adoption of good hygiene practices, such as washing your hands thoroughly after cleaning up food scraps or diapers in children.

Bree had no symptoms other than a & # 39; bit bored & # 39; but felt that this was a common complaint from women who took care of a toddler during pregnancy.

Bree had no symptoms other than a & # 39; bit bored & # 39; but felt that this was a common complaint from women who took care of a toddler during pregnancy.

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Bree had no symptoms other than a & # 39; bit bored & # 39; but felt that this was a common complaint from women who took care of a toddler during pregnancy.

Bree and Dax at the local swimming pool

Bree and Dax at the local swimming pool

Bree and Mitchell have an older daughter named Dylan

Bree and Mitchell have an older daughter named Dylan

& # 39; Unfortunately I was not aware of CMV and I have a burden of guilt that I will bear forever, so it hurts me to look at my 20-week ultrasound image & # 39 ;, she said.

Bree had no symptoms other than a & # 39; bit bored & # 39; but felt that this was a common complaint from women who took care of a toddler during pregnancy.

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But now that she knows the potential complications, she would advise women to be aware of the risks.

& # 39; Unfortunately I was not aware of CMV and I have a feeling of guilt that I will bear forever. That's why it hurts me to look at my 20-week ultrasound image & she said.

While life is busy, there are daily improvements in the state of Dax that keep the family hopeful

While life is busy, there are daily improvements in the state of Dax that keep the family hopeful

While life is busy, there are daily improvements in the state of Dax that keep the family hopeful

& # 39; He has regular physical therapy, personal training, occupational therapy, speech therapy, hydrotherapy and will soon begin a transition to the school program, & # 39; she said.

& # 39; He has regular physical therapy, personal training, occupational therapy, speech therapy, hydrotherapy and will soon begin a transition to the school program, & # 39; she said.

& # 39; He has regular physical therapy, personal training, occupational therapy, speech therapy, hydrotherapy and will soon begin a transition to the school program, & # 39; she said.

& # 39; A photo of a perfectly developing child, a photo that would change everything in the coming weeks due to a common virus. & # 39;

While life is busy, there are daily improvements in the state of Dax that keep the family hopeful.

& # 39; He has regular physical therapy, personal training, occupational therapy, speech therapy, hydrotherapy and will soon begin a transition to the school program, & # 39; she said.

& # 39; So while he cannot walk independently, he steps into his walking frame, he often rides his modified bike, he does not feed himself but reaches and drinks his drinking bottle, he may not speak but he listens and communicates in his own unique way. & # 39;

The family uses their Facebook page The Double D & # 39; s take on CMV to inform other families about the state of Dax.

You can learn more at the Congenital Cytomegalovirus Association of Australia & # 39; s website and Facebook page.

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