Pregnant and worried about coronavirus (COVID-19)? While pregnancy does increase a woman’s health risks, it is important to arm yourself with facts and helpful information.
Given the newness of COVID-19, medical professionals are still evaluating the impact of the disease on pregnant women. However, we do know standard practices that can help you keep yourself healthy and safe:
- Social distancing and significantly limiting or avoiding large gatherings or crowds. (This might mean finding innovate, virtual ways to celebrate this special time with family and friends.)
- Washing your hands multiple times a day with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. (An alcohol-based hand sanitizer may be used if soap and water are not available.)
- Avoiding touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Staying well-hydrated and getting lots of rest. (Drinking plenty of water and getting adequate rest help to maintain the health of your immune system for you and your baby.)
- Avoiding close contact with people who are sick.
- Staying home when feeling sick.
- Covering your cough or sneeze with a tissue and immediately discarding the tissue in the trash.
- Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched objects and surfaces.
- Avoiding all unnecessary travel.
Other information to know:
To date, the risk of a pregnant person passing along the infection to their fetus appears to be very low. Currently there is no evidence of any fetal malformations or effects due to maternal infection with COVID-19.
When it comes to breastfeeding, there is no evidence that COVID-19 is spread through breast milk. From what is currently known, coronavirus is spread through respiratory droplets (coughing and sneezing). To stop the spread, mothers and anyone around the baby should wash their hands, following the recommendations listed above, and consider wearing a face mask to minimize infants’ exposure to the virus.