How Will Coronavirus Impact Pregnant Women or Babies?
Who would have thought that 2020 would head in this direction? Well, apart from the old man at my husband's barbershop that claims he read a book 20 years ago that predicted this. And there's been a lot of talk in Australia's media about how the Coronavirus will affect our vulnerable, specifically the elderly. However, there is very little information out there for women who are pregnant or have newborns so I've gathered all the information I could and put together this resource for you.
I need to point out that I am not a medical professional and if you or your baby are showing signs of being unwell, then you need to seek medical advice straight away.
Coronavirus in Pregnancy
After scouring the web I found a few articles touching on the effects of Coronavirus in pregnancy. Not all of them are accurate. And here's why. Because this virus is new there are very limited cases and studies to show us what impact it will have. At this stage, there haven't been any cases where the virus passes from mother to unborn baby. The placenta protects your baby. And that's great news.
There's also no information to suggest that you will experience more serious symptoms because you're pregnant.
However, let's widen the perspective on this. As you've probably discovered, when a woman is pregnant the medications that are safe to use are very limited. Pregnant women also have to be really conscious of hydration levels, the foods they eat and fatigue levels as these all affect mother and baby. So, getting sick really does suck.
What You Can Do
It's important to follow all the advice the medical professionals are providing. Ensure you and everyone around you is practicing good hygiene. Stay at home where you can and avoid large crowds.
If you are in the earlier stages of pregnancy and you haven't told anyone, consider sharing your news. Everyone will love hearing such beautiful news right now and people will be more aware of your need to extra careful.
Studies also show that pregnant women have a lower immune system so taking action to support that can be really helpful. Eating well (as best you can!), supplementing what you need to, and reducing stress can all go a long way in protecting yourself.
Finally, made sure you're keeping in touch with your Doctors and Midwifes to get your checks and all the information you need. Ask them what they're doing to reduce waiting room crowds and encourage them to pass on information that might pertain to you.
Being stuck at home is fun for a couple of days, and then the cabin fever can set in. Here's a list of things you can do at home that helps to keep you healthy and keeps your mood high.
- Yoga at home
- Finish the nursery
- Have random dance breaks
- Facetime with people several times a day
- Keep a journal (looking back on this in 20 years and it won't seem real!)
Coronavirus in Newborns
There is really no information about the effects of Coronavirus on a newborn so we need to lean into what we already know about babies and keeping them well.
It's pretty normal to deny visitation with your newborn if someone is sick. Generally speaking, its common knowledge that if you are sick you should not go near a newborn. There is little immune systems are still developing.
However, we aren't always aware that we have a virus until symptoms occur. Which means parents will need to be even more hypervigilant.
If you have a newborn (firstly, congratulations!) then consider denying all visitors. Set up Facetime visits instead. Take cute videos and them to family and friends. This is a time where more than ever you can stay in the new baby bubble without it being burst.
What If My Baby Gets It?
Even if you have a bubble around you, it is still possible that Coronavirus will come into your home. So, what do you do if your baby gets unwell?
It's important to treat it with seriousness. Contact your GP and get your baby thoroughly checked out. However, if your baby is having difficulty breathing or persistently high temperatures then please go straight to Emergency at the hospital. You are not a burden - it's what they are there for.
Caring for the Mothers
Having a new baby isn't easy. And in uncertain times it can feel really scary to be bringing a baby into the world. I want you to know that it is completely okay for you to be feeling scared or anxious. What I don't want for you is to be experiencing these emotions alone. Find someone you can talk to openly about how you're feeling. Lean into your supports.
If feelings of anxiety are persistent and they are affecting how you're able to function every day then it's important to seek professional support. You deserve to get that support mama. I promise!
P.S. Looking to indulge in a little online shopping while you're cooped up at home? Head to the SHOP to get your swimwear situation sorted.