Pregnant women are less likely to contract the infection than the general population. However, pregnancy completely transforms the body’s immune system and its response to viral infections. This can occasionally be related to more severe symptoms and this will be the same for COVID-19. According to some of the best gynaecology hospitals in Hyderabad, the reported cases of COVID-19 pneumonia in pregnancy are milder. Whereas in other types of coronavirus infection, the risks to the mother appears usually during the last trimester of pregnancy.
The coronavirus epidemic enhances the risk of perinatal anxiety and depression. Therefore, it is critically important that pregnant women are provided proper mental care and support. Pregnant women with heart disease are at highest risk of infection and having gestational diabetes during pregnancy adds yet another layer to the matter.
It was on April 2, 2020, near the onset of the global pandemic that the first AAP neonatal guidance was provided, after it was clear that SARS-CoV-2 was very contagious and infected individuals could suffer severely.
The risk will be lesser if mother and infant room-in together using coronavirus infection control measures. However, a mother who is ill with COVID-19 may not be able to care for her infant in a safe way. Hence, in such circumstances it may be appropriate to temporarily separate mother and a newborn or to have the newborn cared for by nurses. And, when a mother provides care to her newborn, she should essentially wear a mask to remain hygienic and safe.
Various published studies have detected the presence of SARS-CoV-2 nucleic acid in breast milk. Although viable infectious virus has not been detected in breast milk. In fact, according to a study, pasteurization methods such as those used to prepare donor milk inactivate SARS-CoV-2. However, it is not clearly established whether protective antibody is found in breast milk. But, mothers should perform hand hygiene before breastfeeding and also wear a mask during breastfeeding the baby.
Now that we are clear about all the essential guidelines for Pregnancy and Post Delivery in this COVID situation, it is also important to know how to prepare for delivery in a healthy way. This can be possible by performing certain exercises.
Exercise can prepare your body for an easier and comfortable delivery. Suitable physical exercises can also help you to return to your pre-baby weight sooner. There are various exercises and techniques you can use to prepare your body for labor and delivery.
Child’s pose –
This exercise can help lengthen pelvic floor muscles and ease discomfort. To perform this exercise, you would need to kneel down, sit on your heels and lean forward slowly and stretch your arms out long in front of you. Then try to breathe deeply and you can also rest your elbows on the ground in front of you with your hands supporting your head.
Deep squat –
This exercise helps relax and extend the pelvic floor muscles and stretch the perineum. To do deep squat, stand with your legs wider than hip width, and squat down as far as you can go with your hands pressed together in front of you.
Perineal bulges –
This exercise enables pushing during delivery without holding your breath which is called Valsalva. It can decrease the rate of blood flow back to the heart. Additionally, reduce maternal blood pressure. It also helps increase foetal head compression and foetal distress. According to the Physiotherapists, perineal bulges should only be practiced in the last three weeks of pregnancy because it can place excessive pressure on your pelvic floor structures.
If are you are an expecting mother and thinking about when to start exercising for normal delivery? Then the answer to this important question is that, you must wait until after your postnatal checkup, between six weeks and eight weeks. Also, you must avoid swimming until you have had your postnatal check up done and have had seven full days without any postnatal bleeding or discharge.
COVID-19 has affected our lives in a several ways. Therefore, it is important for everyone especially expecting mothers to take precautions against the fatal coronavirus infection. This will reduce their as well as their baby’s chances of getting infected with the virus.