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Pregnant women, infant children at worst risk of contracting COVID-19

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Pregnant women need to exercise extreme caution in maintaining social distancing even with family members to avoid contracting infection

If you have been planning to get pregnant, now is certainly not the time to do so as pregnant women and infant children are at worst risk of contracting COVID-19. While there is no evidence of feto-maternal transmission of COVID-19 infection in the womb which means the infection is not automatically passed on to the newborn child from the mother, the child is at risk of acquiring the infection immediately after birth.

Dr S Padma, Sr Consultant & HOD, Obstetrics & Gynaecology, Meenakshi Mission Hospital and Research Centre (MMHRC) said, “While COVID-19 positive patients are safely delivering babies both through normal birth process and caesarean procedures, it’s best to avoid planning pregnancies at this time, as newborns have extremely tender immunity systems and they can get infected very quickly. In such unprecedented times, when all of us are living in constant fear of a deadly virus, the stress and tension that the pregnant women may experience regarding their and their child’s health can also adversely impact the developing foetus.”

Pregnant women also have to exercise extreme caution in maintaining social distancing even with the family members to avoid contracting the infection. They are again at great risk of contracting the infection at the time of delivery.

Dr Padma said, “Both the mother and the infant are at the same risk as the general population of getting infected, however with almost all hospitals now catering to COVID patients and the virus spreading rapidly, we would advise that eager would-be parents hold off trying to get pregnant till the situation becomes a little more stable.”

In such times, when parents are all the more anxious about their little one’s health and with doctors getting anxious queries from expectant mothers, for those of you who have already conceived and are on the way to motherhood, it is a must to follow certain precautions to be safe and protected from the deadly virus.

In general, other health measures that can be adopted to keep your pregnancy healthy are thoroughly washing vegetables and fruits before consuming them, washing hands frequently and maintaining a regular physical exercise regime. Above all always stay happy and positive for a sound mental health.

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