Some main ideas are that: – there is still much unknown about the virus and how it affects pregnancy and infants, – pregnant women and infants are considered high-risk, – a COVID-19 positive mother does not necessarily mean a COVID-19 infant, – the danger during breastfeeding is from respiratory droplets, – the virus has not been found in breast milk (although is under study).
COVID-19 and Breastfeeding ACOG cites CDC precautions when breastfeeding such as wearing a face mask while caring for your baby, washing hands often, washing breast pumps before and after, and having a non-infected person feed your baby the expressed milk. These apply for COVID-19 positive parents as well as those who are being tested for COVID-19 (PUI = Person Under Investigation).
ACOG recommends a temporary separation of mother and baby until precautions are no longer required. This is vague and seems to be at the discretion of hospitals to decide their policy and reasoning. Therefore, ask your OBGYN about your hospital’s policy if you plan on giving birth in the hospital setting in the next few months. Also ask about your partner’s parental rights to the infant if your hospital does separate mother and infant for COVID-19 concerns.
Maryland Midwife Care If you are interested in a home birth and have a low-risk pregnancy, local midwives are prepared to serve you and your family.
You might be feeling anxious. Pause for a moment. Take a deep calming breath. While we know there is uncertainty around us, we are okay in this moment.
COVID-19, commonly known as Coronavirus, is a current pandemic that seems to be most threatening to those with underlying health conditions. As with the flu and other viruses, pregnancy woman are more susceptible. Continue practicing good hygiene by washing hands and high-touch objects like light switches and door knobs. Avoid those who are sick when you are able.
There is still little evidence about COVID-19 and pregnancy or postpartum results since it is still so new. However, similar viruses have existed and we can apply some of that knowledge in our current situation. The CDC has a to-the-point FAQs page about pregnancy and COVID-19. In short, the virus does not seem to pass to newborns in utero, during birth, or afterwards through breastfeeding.
So, breath easily and take care of yourself.
Love, Mamulya Doula.
Information for Healthcare Providers: COVID-19 and Pregnant Women FAQ. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 16 Mar. 2020, www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/pregnant-women-faq.html.
Hello! My name is Ruth and I offer doula services in Anne Arundel County and the surrounding area. If you aren’t sure what a doula is, check out this post for more information.
What led me to working as a doula? Well, birth has always been fascinating, but I had always approached it from the angle of my own personal experiences. My mom likes to tease me about when I was in high school and asking questions about birth just in case I should have to give birth in the middle of a forest in Russia. I did end up giving birth in Russia – in a hospital – where I had lived for about 8 years. I later gave birth to my son in the USA, but I didn’t consider being a doula until 2016 when I first heard about what a doula is and does and thought, “I WANT TO DO THAT!”