COVID-19 currently has not affected very many pregnant patients, but the case studies have shown that pregnant women who are infected have had mild to severe symptoms, similar to those relate to our community.
Dr. Jennifer Pense, one of Sound Family Medicine’s doctors practicing obstetrics, provides guidance on what an expecting mom can do to prevent coronavirus infection.
What are the best precautions to take against COVID-19 if you’re pregnant?
“The most important thing you can do as a pregnant person in regard to COVID-19 is to not get it,” Pense says. “We don’t have a lot of data about how COVID-19 impacts a pregnancy, but what we’ve seen so far indicates that severity of the disease has the same range in pregnant women as it does in the rest of the population.” Practice the same precautions recommended for everyone:
- Wash hands frequently for at least 20 seconds with soap or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
- Practice social distancing- maintain at least a 6-ft distance from others
- Wear a mask in public
- Stay at home if you are sick, and if someone in your home is sick, stay away from them as much as possible
- Limit visitors
- Keep your phone and tablet sanitized
- Eat well and get plenty of rest
- Don’t share utensils or glasses with anyone
- Attend all your prenatal appointments. If you’re uncomfortable coming into the clinic, car appointments may be available for some prenatal visits.
Am I at higher risk of complications if I do get the virus?
Yes, we believe so, due to changes happening in your body. When you’re pregnant, your body has increased demands for oxygen, an elevated heart rate, decreased lung capacity and changes in your immune system. All of those conditions could make it more difficult for your body to fight a virus like COVID-19.
Taking the necessary precautions should keep you safe from COVID-19. If you feel symptoms like fever, dough or difficulty breathing, please contact your provider right away.
Hear more from Dr. Pense: