Giving birth during COVID-19: What to expect

Many pregnant women are worried about planning the birth of their baby during the pandemic. If your stress level is rising and you’re becoming overwhelmed with questions, that’s totally understandable. Giving birth is stressful enough. Adding a pandemic to the mix has only increased anxiety among today’s moms-to-be. While it’s true that aspects of labor and delivery may look different than they did prior to COVID-19. To ensure the health and safety of mom and baby remains the goal.

Here are some concerns you may want to address

What health and safety protocols have been implemented to reduce COVID-19 exposure risk?

As COVID-19 spreads through the air and women who are in labor breathe heavily during contractions, everyone in the room with you needs to wear a mask for your safety. Getting the vaccine protects the baby that’s why pregnant women are recommended to get the COVID-19 vaccine. The good news is not only does doing the vaccine protect you, it protects your baby, who will receive antibodies from you. The obstetricians, midwives, physician anesthesiologists, nurses, and other health care providers who care for women in labor have been vaccinated and follow other precautions to ensure safety, such as wearing personal protective equipment (PPE). recommends 

How many support persons can I have by my side in the hospital?

Currently, most hospitals will allow only one or two support people in the room with the laboring mom. If you test positive for COVID-19, safety protocols mean you will not be able to bring anyone in the room with you. After delivery, most new moms leave the hospital sooner, they spend less time in the hospital than they might have before the pandemic. one day (vs. two days) after vaginal birth and two or three days (vs. three or four) after cesarean delivery. The elements of the protocol include providing patient education prior to delivery, promoting breastfeeding and mother-baby bonding, and getting women up and moving as quickly and safely as possible. Rest assured that some things haven’t changed during the pandemic. Health care providers such as physician anesthesiologists will be by your side during your time of need.

Are there any extra precautions I should be taking at home before my baby arrives?

The final weeks before your delivery are an important time to continue social distancing. This means limiting contact with people outside your immediate family. This will lower your risk of getting COVID-19 just before you have your baby.  Hospitals have implemented several additional health and safety measures to make it as safe as possible for you to have your baby during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Despite the challenges, we need smart ways to promote maternal and infant health during the pandemic.

Choosing where you’ll welcome your baby into the world is an important decision. Plan ahead if you can. Pack any special snacks, drinks, books, toiletries, and anything else you might want during your stay. It’s where you’ll make your first memories together. No matter the circumstances, having a baby is a joyful occasion. Changes in labor and delivery protocols during COVID-19 ensure it’s a safe experience.

Disclaimer

The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this website are for informational purposes only. The purpose of this website is to promote broad consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

References:

https://www.healthpartners.com/blog/giving-birth-during-covid-19/

https://uvahealth.com/services/covid19/birth-coronavirus-faqs

https://www.newswise.com/coronavirus/six-facts-women-need-to-know-about-giving-birth-during-the-covid-19-pandemic/?article_id=750200

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