While everyone is feeling rather uneasy during the Coronavirus pandemic, expectant moms-to-be might be feeling even more overwhelmed and nervous than most. Things like contracting the disease while you’re pregnant, passing it on to your baby, or even giving birth during the outbreak might be weighing heavily on expectant moms.
To help put your mind at ease, we have put together a list of frequently asked questions around pregnancy and COVID-19. Plus, we share some tips to help navigate your way through this trying time
It’s important to note that, as we are learning more about this new virus every day, it is still quite early to draw solid conclusions about how the coronavirus affects pregnant women and their babies. However, doctors and researchers are discovering new information all the time, helping them to draw more accurate deductions and make more informed decisions.
Pregnancy and COVID-19: Frequently Asked Questions
If I am Pregnant Will COVID-19 Impact Me Differently?
We do know that people with certain health conditions, such as diabetes, respiratory illnesses, or heart disease, have a higher risk of becoming sicker from COVID-19. But at this time, there isn’t any evidence to suggest that pregnant women (without underlying health conditions) are more likely to have serious side effects and complications.
If I am Pregnant Should I Take Extra Precautions?
There is nothing about pregnancy itself that makes women more prone to being infected by COVID-19, so they should follow the same guidelines as everyone else. This, of course, includes proper handwashing, avoiding touching your face, and following social distancing. See below for more tips and guidelines to follow.
Should I Change My Delivery Plans?
Talk with your free pregnancy clinic or doctor about your birth plan. Hospitals across the country are adjusting their practices to limit exposure risks during the pandemic. Call your hospital and ask these important questions, and they will be able to tell you what precautions will be taken and what you can expect before, during, and after birth.
What Should I Do If I’m Pregnant and Think I Have COVID-19?
If you think you may have been exposed to the virus and are showing symptoms, call your clinic or healthcare provider as soon as possible. They will be able to talk you through what is deemed “normal” and what may indicate you have contracted COVID-19. If your healthcare provider suggests you take a test, they will provide you with information on where to go and what to expect.
What Should I Do If I am Pregnant and Diagnosed with COVID-19?
Pregnant women who are diagnosed with COVID-19 should follow the advice of their OB-GYN or pregnancy clinic. This will probably include self-isolation for a minimum of two weeks, as well as include things like staying home and keeping a safe distance from loved ones.
If I Test Positive, Can I Transmit The Virus To My Baby?
So far researchers and healthcare professionals have not seen any indications that COVID-19 can be transmitted to an unborn baby. However, after birth, the transmission is possible if there’s exposure to a COVID-19-positive caregiver, which includes the mother. Therefore it’s a good idea to protect newborns from exposure, including family members and friends who may be infected.
Can My Baby Be Infected From My Breast Milk?
To date, the virus has not been found in breastmilk and there’s no evidence to suggest it’s transmittable this way. However, close contact while feeding a baby would increase the risk of spreading the virus. It is therefore recommended that new moms (who test positive for the virus) consider pumping milk for a temporary period after birth to protect newborns from possibly contracting the virus.
Tips For Pregnant Moms During The Coronavirus Pandemic
As mentioned above, expectant moms should follow the same guidelines recommended for others, such as the following:
- Work remotely or attend virtual lectures and classes where possible
- Avoid unnecessary travel to the shops, stores, and public areas
- Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
- Clean, sanitize, and disinfect all high-touch areas at work and at home
- Wear a fabric or a medical mask whenever you leave your home
- Avoid touching your mouth, eyes, nose, and face when in public places
- Avoid large social gatherings and practice social distancing
And, Try Keep in Mind the Following:
As hard as it may seem, try not to worry and cause yourself additional stress
Continue with regular checkups and scans at your local clinic or doctor, rest assured they have taken every precaution necessary
If you are feeling overly anxious, speak to or visit your clinic or doctor’s office, they will answer any questions or concerns you may have
Keep up-to-date with helpful websites and online resources such as https://www.who.int
We’re Always Here To Support You
We know being faced with an unplanned pregnancy can be difficult, and even more difficult during a worldwide pandemic. However, you don’t have to do it alone. PRC is a free community pregnancy clinic that is here to help you every step of the way.
If you have any questions or would like to come and speak with one of our nurses or counselors about pregnancy and COVID-19, or just your pregnancy in general, please pop into our Naples free clinic. At PRC we have a caring team of staff and volunteers who are here to assist you with all of your pregnancy needs.