April 11 has been declared as National Safe Motherhood Day by the government of India, which is the birth anniversary of Mrs. Kasturba Gandhi. Today, on National Safe Motherhood Day, we hope that you stay healthy and have adequate access to all the care that you may need during and after your pregnancy.
Coronavirus is an increasing threat that has spread all over the globe, and has caused widespread anxiousness. While this is a difficult time for all of us, it must be especially stressful for expecting mothers or new mothers.
While vertical transmission of the virus has not been reported yet (i.e. the virus cannot pass from an infected mother to her unborn child) precaution is better than cure. Read on for information that will help you stay informed and help you stay calm.
Firstly, when it comes to symptoms, it can be very confusing. Following are the symptoms of the COVID-19 disease:
- Running nose
- Difficulty in breathing
- High fever
- Shortness of breath
If you observe, these symptoms seem pretty commonplace. Plus, when you are pregnant, there are a lot of physical (external and internal) changes that your body goes through. Thus, having a viral infection might make you feel weaker. But it doesn’t necessarily translate into a positive sign of COVID-19.
However, if the infection goes undetected, then it might further complicate your pregnancy. If you are pregnant and observe the following symptoms, then you should immediately consult your doctor:
- Moderate cough/flu
- Shortness of breath
An important point that you can stop worrying about is that even if you contract the COVID-19 infection, you cannot pass this to your unborn baby, there is no increased risk of miscarriage and there will be no abnormalities in your baby due to this infection. However, there is a chance that you might go into preterm labor.
Please note that a pregnant woman can get COVID-19 infection more easily as compared to a non-pregnant woman. Therefore you should be very cautious and implement the following things to reduce the risk of getting infected:
- Wash your hands frequently with soap.
- Wash your hands and face when you come from outside.
- Use effective sanitizers to keep your hands clean.
- Don’t touch your mouth, nose and eyes with unwashed hands.
- Sanitize your surroundings.
- Do not visit public places until absolutely necessary.
- Reduce social contact and do not use public transport as far as possible.
- If you are still working, then get permission from your office to start working from home.
- Avoid going to restaurants and parties to minimize exposure to coronavirus.
- Use online services such as bill payments, online shopping wherever possible.
- Some things to keep in mind while visiting your gynecologist:
- Communicate your concern to your doctor and get effective advice on how to remain safe during this pandemic.
- Contact your gynecologist or the clinic and check for your appointment. You might need to reschedule your appointment as per their staff shift and their schedule, which might have been changed due to coronavirus outbreak.
- Get in touch with your doctor on a video call, if meeting them is not necessary.
- With the coronavirus spreading at an alarming rate, reduce your visits to your doctor and meet them only when required.
- Travel only if necessary and make sure that you keep yourself sanitized and isolated as much as possible.
If you get diagnosed for coronavirus, then do not panic. Get in touch with your doctor as soon as possible and isolate yourself on your doctor’s advice. If you make a recovery, then you can have a normal labor and delivery. Your baby will be tested for COVID-19 after birth and your doctors will suggest you on further steps to be taken.
Make sure that you have adequate maternity cover in your health insurance policy
. Contact your insurance company and enquire about the coverage offered to you against coronavirus during and post pregnancy.
We hope that you have a safe and healthy pregnancy and delivery experience!