Being pregnant or becoming a new mother during the Coronavirus pandemic is a sensitive time for many women. How do you protect yourself and your baby? How do you meet the necessary medical check-up requirements to ensure that you and your baby are safe?
How do you separate the facts from fake news that could lead to misinformation? Here is how you can take care of yourself and your baby according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).
Understanding how the coronavirus spreads
Knowing how the coronavirus spreads can help lead to debunking myths that can cause unnecessary panic or misinformation that could put you and your baby at risk. The coronavirus is known to spread through:
Respiratory droplets. If a person sneezes or coughs, they release respiratory droplets that can affect people that are nearby. If these droplets land on your mouth, eyes and nose by being inhaled you could be infected.
Not wearing a mask. Viral particles called aerosols are known to float or drift in the air when an infected person talks, signs or breathes. If you are standing close to such a person with no mask on you could be infected.
Surfaces. It has been revealed that the virus lives on surfaces and can spread by people touching such surfaces and then proceeding to touch their face or mouth. Regularly disinfecting surfaces or products before you consume them is essential. This also means sanitizing packages that you receive. Always remember to wash any raw vegetables or fruit before consuming them.
Bodily fluids. The virus is known to be spread through saliva, semen, and faeces. This also means that the virus can be transmitted through kissing an infected person.
How can you protect yourself if you are pregnant?
It is important to take the same precautions that have been set for everyone to protect you and your unborn baby. The same goes for women who have given birth. Remember to:
Frequently wash your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or use soap and water.
Keep a safe distance between yourself and others. Avoid crowded spaces that can put you at risk.
Avoid touching your mouth, eyes, and nose.
Always wear a mask when outside and dispose of any tissue that you cough or sneeze into immediately.
If you have a fever, cough or difficulty breathing, seek medical care early. Call before going to a health facility, and follow the directions of your local health authority.
Should I continue going for medical check-ups?
There may be concerns regarding travelling to see a doctor, but it is crucial for pregnant women and women who have recently delivered – including those affected by COVID-19 - to attend their routine care appointments. If your doctor offers home visits or telehealth visits where they call in instead, you can make use of these. If you must travel to see the doctor, keeping the set guidelines is important. Keep in mind to constantly communicate with your doctor to work around how you can protect and take care of you and your baby.
Will you be able to breastfeed and touch your baby?
Yes. As long as you follow the set guidelines of washing your hands and wearing respiratory protective gear, you will be able to feed and protect your child. Furthermore, it is encouraged. Remember to keep the surfaces and items such as bottles regularly disinfected and wash linen and toys regularly to protect you and your baby.
During this sensitive time, it is also important to financially prepare for your child’s future with MiLittleLife, to take care of your baby’s medical and financial needs.