Based on the most current available information:
- Pregnant people, with no underlying medical condition, are not at more risk for contracting COVID-19 compared to the rest of the population
- Pregnant people do not appear to display more severe symptoms of the illness. Most will experience mild or moderate cold like symptoms.
- COVID-19 has not been detected in breast milk, the placenta, or amniotic fluid of infected pregnant women
How to Protect Yourself:
- Avoid people who are sick or who have been exposed to the virus
- Wash your hands often using soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily
- Avoid large gatherings
- Keep a distance of at least 2 arms lengths from others, as much as possible
Tips for supporting your pregnancy while at home:
- Pregnancy and Exercise
The 2019 Canadian Guideline for Physical Activity throughout Pregnancy recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity each week. This can be broken down into 30 minute sessions
Options to consider when gyms and fitness classes are closed include brisk walking around your neighbourhood, stationary bicycling in your home, or a gentle stretching/yoga program.
Research shows significant health benefits throughout pregnancy for both mother and baby. It supports mental health by reducing stress, reduces risk of gestational diabetes, high blood pressure, and preeclampsia.
Refer to the following link for outlines on contraindications to exercise during pregnancy to ensure these guidelines are appropriate for you.
- Mindfulness to reduce stress and anxiety
Evidence suggests approximately 21% of pregnant people have serious anxiety and 18% of women are depressed during pregnancy. COVID-19 has only added to these levels of worry and stress. Some recent studies have studied the effect of an 8 week mindfulness program for pregnant people and have demonstrated reductions in stress, depression, and anxiety.
The link below discusses various studies and the possible benefits of integrating a mindfulness program into your daily routine:
If you are struggling with your own mental health, it is of utmost importance that you discuss this with your primary healthcare provider. This ensures you are getting the proper support you need.
- Initiate a Course of Pelvic Physiotherapy
The 2019 Canadian Guideline for Physical Activity throughout Pregnancy recommends a regular routine of pelvic floor muscle training to reduce the risk of urinary incontinence.
Although the pandemic has closed offices and treatments are conducted virtually, there are many benefits to connecting with a Pelvic Floor Physiotherapist during pregnancy. Education and exercise guidance helps to address and improve common symptoms such as lower back/pelvic/hip pain. Pelvic physiotherapy provides support on optimizing bladder and bowel health habits.
For more details on how pelvic physiotherapy can help with pregnancy and post-partum.