If you’re expecting a baby under normal circumstances, you might have questions about the best ways to help keep your child growing and healthy until delivery. During the COVID-19 pandemic, those questions may increase. But it’s important to know, your care team is there to help you along the way.
One way to help get those questions and concerns addressed is by ensuring you are keeping up to date on your prenatal appointments — including talking to your doctor when you first find out you’re pregnant. This may be one way to make sure you and your child are staying as healthy and safe as possible. Your care provider may use telehealth for some appointments, but others may need to take place in person.
If you need to visit a member of your care team, it may be important to remember the following:
- Confirm the policies in place at your clinic; you may need to attend alone
- Practice social distancing while you’re there
- Wash your hands often and wear a mask
During your pregnancy, your provider may also explain any potential risks of COVID-19 as you continue your prenatal care. This may include additional stress or anxiety due to the pandemic. It’s important to share these concerns with your care provider, so they may be able to help you find resources or additional help, if needed.
If contracted, pregnant women with COVID-19 may be more likely to develop respiratory problems than women who are not pregnant. Your care provider may be able to give you a more specific assessment of your personal risk.
When you’re pregnant, it’s important to keep healthy habits. These may include:
- Taking a daily prenatal vitamin
- Eating nutritious foods
- Maintaining a healthy weight
- Avoiding drugs and alcohol
- Getting plenty of sleep and rest
When it’s time to deliver the baby, there might be limitations on the number of people who can visit you at the hospital. There may also be changes to your hospital or delivery center’s policies but your birth plan and delivery method may not need to change.
Post-partum care for you and your baby may be crucial. It’s important to check in with your doctor two weeks after giving birth to help ensure your body is healing correctly and to assess your risk of post-partum depression. Appointments should take place two weeks and six weeks after birth.
Remember to check in with yourself regarding your mental health, as well, particularly with feelings of isolation. “Baby blues” may be normal but post-partum depression may be a more serious condition.
Taking these steps, and keeping in close contact with your care team throughout your journey, may not only help give you peace of mind, but also help you and your baby take the first steps together toward a lifetime of health and wellness.
For more information on taking care of your baby — and yourself — click here.