Pregnancy can be a time of both excitement and anxiety. It’s natural for expecting mothers to fret about everything but during the Covid-19 pandemic, you might be feeling a unique type of stress. You might be uncertain about the effect of this virus on the unborn baby. Anxiety often goes hand-in-hand during pregnancy but too much thinking might have a bad effect on the baby.
Dr Nupur Gupta in an interview with HealthWire Media answer often-asked questions about pregnancy in the time of the pandemic, and also shares some tips you can do at home to ease your worries.
Q. Can a foetus/baby contract coronavirus from the mother in the womb?
The doctor said the level of viruses in the blood of patients with Covid-19 was low, so transmission from the placenta to the baby is very uncommon.
Babies who have been diagnosed with coronavirus shortly after birth not clearly shows that whether the transmission was before the birth or soon after birth. Also, coronavirus doesn’t affect pregnant women more seriously. And while following all preventions we are certainly avoiding the chances of getting flu, which does affect pregnant women more severely.
If you have symptoms of Covid-19, there’s no need to panic. It is best to call your doctor to determine whether you need testing and/or to come in for evaluation.
Pregnant women with co-morbidities like diabetes or thyroid may be at increased risk for severe illness. However, with high-quality medical assistance provided to women delivering their babies at hospitals, with special attention and care patients can prevent themselves for such risks. Hydration and adequate rest also are important in maintaining the health of your immune system.
Q. Should a pregnant mother avoid hospital visits as they can be exposed to Covid-19?
Due to the current global pandemic, we are facing, Gynaecologist around are either increasing the interval between visits or encouraging telehealth visits. In my opinion, Prenatal visits are important to ensure maternal and fetal health but I can also understand the fear in the society so I advise patients to buy a blood pressure cuff and weight machine to monitor mother’s health, and one can also rent fetal monitors for use at home if possible, so as to remotely monitor baby’s movements.
I recommend that women talk to their doctor about their prenatal care and continue to attend appointments as long as their is need for it.
Q. What other precautions should I take around my baby to maintain immunity?
Mothers who have given birth to a newborn can breastfeed their baby but however, if the mother is too unwell to breastfeed, she can feed her baby by expressing milk, or via donor human milk.
Mother should also eat a healthy diet, do yoga and breathing exercises, and maintain good hygiene. If you’re healthy, it will protect your baby from illness too.
Q. Are there specific precautionary measures for pregnant women?
It is critically important to support women. It is preferable to exercise at home; there are many online pregnancy yoga and pilates classes. Joining online antenatal classes will help you know more about caring for your baby and your own body during pregnancy.