SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, its effects are on the minds of those preparing to welcome a child to the world.
Danielle Howe is expecting her first child, a baby girl, to arrive shortly after 2021 begins.
“It’s very exciting and I’m just, I’m ready for her to come and we’re just excited to see what she looks like and everything and hope that she’s healthy,” Howe said.
Being pregnant during the pandemic has Howe taking extra precautions.
“If going out in public, wearing a mask when I can and everything, washing hands quite frequently,” Howe said.
And taking COVID-19 precautions like that are extra important for expecting mothers according to Dr. Abrea Roark.
“I’m asking them to mandatory mask anytime they’re around other people and to kind of avoid anything, extra sort of thing. No, no birthday parties, no big gatherings sort of thing,” Roark said.
She says women who are pregnant are immunosuppressed, putting them at a higher risk for getting COVID-19.
“The biggest risks for pregnant women seems to be a coagulation abnormality where the increased risk of blood clots, including placental abnormalities and increased risk of an abnormal flow through that umbilical cord. So that can include the risk of babies dying in utero at any gestation,” Roark said.
Making routine prenatal care crucial.
She says the good news is that research shows most mothers with mild COVID-19 cases can expect little impact on their newborn.
“A lot of these babies will do remarkably well and have like no signs or symptoms of disease. I mean, there has been a couple of reports across the country of babies getting like a severe infection, which seems to be related to how symptomatic mom is. A lot of our patients have like mild disease. So I think the risk of a baby with mild disease is still pretty good,” Roark said.
Her best advice is to stay vigilant and take every precaution you can.
“The world is going to go on how it’s going and all we can do is protect ourselves and protect people around us,” Howe said.
For more information regarding COVID-19 during your pregnancy, click here.