Everyone in the world is worried about COVID-19 right now—worried about our collective well-being, and of course, worried about ourselves and our own unique situation. If you’re pregnant right now, you likely have even more on your mind.
Your mind may be reeling with all of the stories on the news and social media. One of the hardest parts of all this is that we are still learning. However, every day we know more, and we want to assure you that although it feels scary, there is still a good chance everything will be okay, especially if you take the proper precautions.
We want you to know that Lifetime continues to be here to help you during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our Adoption Coordinators are available and ready to provide confidential adoption help to you anytime.
Can I still make an adoption plan during the COVID-19 Pandemic?
Learn about families waiting to adopt by visiting our “Find a Family” page. There, you can view online parent profiles and watch videos to learn more about what each adoptive couple has to offer as your baby’s parents. You can also request that Lifetime email or mail you digital or printed copies of profiles.
Pregnancy and Giving Birth During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Let’s take a look at some of the questions you may have about giving birth during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Do babies born to mothers with COVID-19 get the virus?
So far, it doesn’t seem that COVID-19 can be transferred from a pregnant woman to her fetus. In a study done in Wuhan, China, researchers looked at four pregnant women who were known to have COVID-19. After their babies were born, each was found not to have contracted the Coronavirus. And, none of the babies had symptoms of Coronavirus. A previous study of nine women had similar results.
Most of the women in these studies had Cesarean sections in an effort to decrease the chance of transmission. But no changes in childbirth practice have been recommended yet, though. In other words, doctors are not currently suggesting that all pregnant women with COVID-19 have Cesarean sections.
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) writes that “adverse infant outcomes (e.g., preterm birth) have been reported among infants born to mothers positive for COVID-19 during pregnancy. However, this information is based on limited data and it is not clear that these outcomes were related to maternal infection. Currently, it is unclear if COVID-19 can cross through the transplacental route to the fetus.”
The current research does not show concern, though certainly, scientists are monitoring the situation very closely.
What precautions should I take if I am pregnant right now?
Recommendations change daily as experts learn more, so the best thing to do is to keep in close communication with your doctor. He or she can provide you with the most up to date and personalized information.
Here a few basic tips to help protect yourself from the Coronavirus:
- Stay home!
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing your nose, coughing, sneezing, or using the bathroom and always before you prepare or eat a meal.
- Avoid touching your eyes, mouth or nose with unwashed hands
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue away and wash your hands.
Here are the current pregnancy guidelines from ACOG:
- Pregnant women should be treated as an at-risk population.
- Report concerning symptoms immediately: these include fever, cough, and chest tightness or difficulty breathing.
- Follow the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommendations travel. In addition, let your doctor know if you plan to travel anywhere.
- Medical providers will be following a specific formula for deciding when to test pregnant women for COVID-19. The primary criteria are the presence of Coronavirus symptoms.
Talk to your doctor about their current policy regarding birth partners—many hospitals are restricting entrance and only allowing one person to attend a birth.
I am so stressed right now. What can I do?
- Reach out to your Adoption Coordinator. She is your home base right now and can offer you many resources like counseling from a licensed therapist over the phone.
- Talk with your doctor. Tell them exactly what you are worried about and let them calm your fears with information.
- Take an online birth class. Since we’re all supposed to sit tight at home, find a birth class that is offered virtually. Attending a class will help calm your fears and give you valuable information about what to expect. BabyCenter and Kopa Birth are two sites that offer online birth classes for free.
- Protect your energy. Take some time to look at the sources of strength and stress in your life, and then make your choices accordingly. Maybe stepping outside for a walk makes you feel better. Or perhaps talking to a certain family member stresses you out every time they call? Then let your phone ring. It’s totally okay to protect yourself and your wellbeing right now.
- Take it one day at a time. Thinking too far ahead can be harmful, especially when we just don’t have a ton of information on COVID-19. Do the best with the information you do have, and then try to stay in the present.
Isolation is needed right now to flatten the curve. Researchers and scientists are working around the clock to learn more. Medical providers who are updating policies and ready to take care of you the moment you need it. And Lifetime Adoption continues to be available to you, round the clock, for your questions and concerns! We’re just a phone call or a text away, at 1-800-923-6784.
Mardie Caldwell, C.O.A.P., is nationally recognized as an expert on open adoption. A Certiﬁed Open Adoption Practitioner (C.O.A.P.), Caldwell is the founder of Lifetime Adoption Center, established in 1986. She has assisted in over 2,000 successful adoptions and was one of the ﬁrst adoption professionals on the Internet.
Caldwell’s life work is dedicated to educating and helping birth parents find the right adoptive parents for their child. She spreads the word about modern adoption through speaking appearances, webinars, online resources, and as a podcast show host.
She has written several award-winning books, including So I Was Thinking About Adoption, the first book of its kind. There are many reasons women choose adoption, and this short book is a comprehensive resource to make the best plan for you and your baby. Caldwell wrote So I Was Thinking About Adoption as a handy guide to the details of the adoption process.
Caldwell has made over 150 media appearances, including ABC News, CBS News, Larry King Live, CNN Headline News, NBC’s The Today Show, CNN’s The Campbell Brown Show, NBC News, KGO Newstalk Radio, CNN’s Black in America II, MSNBC, Fox, PBS, BBC, and Dr. Laura.