Is It Safe To Get Pregnant During The Coronavirus Outbreak?

The coronavirus has changed almost everything about people’s daily routines. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s social distancing guidelines recommend that people avoid public gatherings, stay indoors as much as possible, and limit their social interactions. If you’re quarantining with your significant other, you have a lot of time to watch movies together, eat frozen dinners, and hook up (not necessarily in that order). In fact, with all this time on your hands, you may be having more sex than usual. But as to whether it’s safe to get pregnant during the coronavirus outbreak, that information is still unclear.

COVID-19 (the disease caused by the novel coronavirus) is still new, so much is unknown about its effects on people. “All that we know right now is extremely limited data,” explains Dr. Lauren Streicher, MD, professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Northwestern University.

A March 16 study of four babies in China found that COVID-19 was not transmitted from mother to baby at the time of birth. The CDC says the virus has not been detected in samples of breast milk or amniotic fluid. The CDC also reports “a small number of reported problems with pregnancy or delivery in babies born to mothers who tested positive for COVID-19 during their pregnancy,” like pre-term birth. However, it is yet unknown whether the virus itself is to blame for this, or whether these issues might have been due to unrelated pregnancy complications.

However, as Streicher points out, “there’s a very big difference between a term baby versus a baby in development.” The CDC website states it currently does not know if a pregnant woman with COVID-19 can pass the coronavirus to her fetus or baby during pregnancy or delivery. “Certainly we know there are infectious issues that can cause problems with growth and development of the baby,” Streicher points out. Certain bacterial infections, viruses, and untreated STDs like chlamydia and gonorrhea have been linked to birth defects and pregnancy loss.

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Tristan Bickman, MD, OB/GYN and author of Whoa, Baby!, tells Elite Daily that “as far as we know, it is safe to get pregnant during the coronavirus outbreak.” However, Streicher urges caution if you’re planning to conceive. “I would put it off until we have a little bit more data,” she says. “But that’s not based on anything. We don’t know.”

It’s worth noting that pregnancy involves regular doctors appointments, which means you’ll have to take more trips outside and be surrounded by more people. If you are immunocompromised or quarantining with someone who is at high risk for severe illness from the coronavirus, this might not be something you want to do.

If you’re currently pregnant, the CDC recommends doing the same things as the general public to protect yourself: avoid people who are sick, wash your hands often with soap and water, and cover your cough with your elbow. “Isolate yourself and do everything you can to not be exposed,” Streicher says. You can always call your doctor if you’d like individual advice. An OB/GYN can answer questions about whether it will be safe to deliver the baby at a hospital, or whether home birth might be right for you.

If you are pregnant and want to get an abortion, you may have to do a bit of extra work to find care. According to Planned Parenthood’s website, the organization continues to monitor the spread of COVID-19, but it does not clearly specify whether all clinics will remain open throughout this crisis. The National Abortion Federation recommends calling the clinics in your area to confirm their operating hours when you make an appointment.

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As far as your sex life goes, you don’t have to put all physical contact on hold. If you’re self-isolating with a monogamous partner, you can be intimate as long as neither of you has been around any potentially contaminated situations in the last 14 days. “As best we know, the COVID virus does not seem to be transmitted in semen,” Streicher notes. But it can be transmitted through an infected person’s respiratory droplets and the mucous membranes in the face, so kissing someone who might have been exposed to the coronavirus might not be the best idea. “I’m not going to tell someone not to have sex if it’s someone they’re intimate with on a daily basis anyway,” Streicher says. “Is this the time to go out and have sex with strangers? Probably not.”

Bickman encourages her patients to exercise caution when having sex. “Make sure to remain as safe as possible and use protection,” she urges. Use your regular method of birth control, and don’t have any sexual contact with someone you aren’t already quarantining with. As the months progress, more data will likely emerge about the specific effects of COVID-19 on pregnancy. Until then, it’s up to your individual discretion as far as how to proceed. “For me, I would say, put [pregnancy] on hold for a month or two,” Streicher says. “If you’re already pregnant, you just have to wait for information to come in.” Do your best to stay safe, isolated, and healthy while scientists continue to learn more about the virus’ effects.

If you think you’re showing symptoms of coronavirus, which include fever, shortness of breath, and cough, call your doctor before going to get tested. If you’re anxious about the virus’s spread in your community, visit the CDC for up-to-date information and resources, or seek out mental health support. 

 

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Sun Stories: Summer – Astonished – Part 3 – Update

 

UPDATE: They’ve run a battery of tests on Summer and the baby. They have determined that the child is fine and there are no problems that they can see. So that’s wonderful news for now.

Summer is a straight A student, but hates to do all the homework they assign the students. She simply pays someone else to do it, then goes in and crushes the exams.

Leave it to this bright, cunning, lovable, repugnant, remorseless girl dodge 9 months of pregnancy. She’s having the baby in 3 months. She’s been pregnant for 6 months. So to her since she found out, she’ll only have to stay sober for 3 months in stead of 9 because 6 of those months are behind her. So to her it feels like a 3 month pregnancy and then boom, baby.

When her father heard the news that the child seemed perfectly healthy, he said “My daughter’s got an Iron Placenta.” (Sounds like a good name for a Death Metal band)

Her mother is already super excited to be a grandmother at 47. These people are rich, that child isn’t going to want for anything. I just pray that it’s okay health and developmentally in it’s formative years.

 

Oh, by the way… It’s a boy.

 

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Sun Stories: Summer – Astonished – Part 2 – Lets Look at the Science

Summer just told me that she just found out that she’s 6 months pregnant and didn’t know it. She drinks like a Viking, and has been for awhile. The whole 6 months she’s been pregnant.

I pray that the baby will be okay, but let’s take a look at what could happen.

 

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

 

 

What is fetal alcohol syndrome?

Women who drink alcohol during pregnancy can give birth to babies with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders, sometimes known as FASDs. FASD is the umbrella term for a range of disorders. These disorders can be mild or severe and can cause physical and mental birth defects. Types of FASDs include:
fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS)
partial fetal alcohol syndrome
alcohol-related birth defects
alcohol-related neurodevelopment disorder
neurobehavioral disorder associated with prenatal alcohol exposure

FAS is a severe form of the condition. People with FAS may have problems with their vision, hearing, memory, attention span, and abilities to learn and communicate. While the defects vary from one person to another, the damage is often permanent.

 

Causes

What are the causes of fetal alcohol syndrome?

When a pregnant woman drinks alcohol, some of that alcohol easily passes across the placenta to the fetus. The body of a developing fetus doesn’t process alcohol the same way as an adult does. The alcohol is more concentrated in the fetus, and it can prevent enough nutrition and oxygen from getting to the fetus’s vital organs.

Damage can be done in the first few weeks of pregnancy when a woman might not yet know that she is pregnant. The risk increases if the mother is a heavy drinker.

According to many studies, alcohol use appears to be most harmful during the first three months of pregnancy. However, consumption of alcohol any time during pregnancy can be harmful, according to guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics.

 

Symptoms

What are the symptoms of fetal alcohol syndrome?

Since fetal alcohol syndrome covers a wide range of problems, there are many possible symptoms. The severity of these symptoms ranges from mild to severe, and can include:
a small head
a smooth ridge between the upper lip and nose, small and wide-set eyes, a very thin upper lip, or other abnormal facial features
below average height and weight
hyperactivity
lack of focus
poor coordination
delayed development and problems in thinking, speech, movement, and social skills
poor judgment
problems seeing or hearing
learning disabilities
intellectual disability
heart problems
kidney defects and abnormalities
deformed limbs or fingers
mood swings

 

 

Diagnosis

How is fetal alcohol syndrome diagnosed?

The earlier the diagnosis, the better the outcome. Talk to your doctor if you think your child might have FAS. Let your doctor know if you drank while you were pregnant.

A physical exam of the baby may show a heart murmur or other heart problems. As the baby matures, there may be other signs that help confirm the diagnosis. These include:
slow rate of growth
abnormal facial features or bone growth
hearing and vision problems
slow language acquisition
small head size
poor coordination

To diagnose someone with FAS, the doctor must determine that they have abnormal facial features, slower than normal growth, and central nervous system problems. These nervous system problems could be physical or behavioral. They might present as hyperactivity, lack of coordination or focus, or learning disabilities.

 

Treatments

What are the treatments for fetal alcohol syndrome?

While FAS is incurable, there are treatments for some symptoms. The earlier the diagnosis, the more progress can be made. Depending on the symptoms a child with FAS exhibits, they may need many doctor or specialist visits. Special education and social services can help very young children. For example, speech therapists can work with toddlers to help them learn to talk.

At home

Children with FAS will benefit from a stable and loving home. They can be even more sensitive to disruptions in routine than an average child. Children with FAS are especially likely to develop problems with violence and substance abuse later in life if they are exposed to violence or abuse at home. These children do well with a regular routine, simple rules to follow, and rewards for positive behavior.

Medications

There are no medications that specifically treat FAS. However, several medications may address symptoms.

These medications include:
antidepressants to treat problems with sadness and negativity
stimulants to treat lack of focus, hyperactivity, and other behavioral problems
neuroleptics to treat anxiety and aggression
antianxiety drugs to treat anxiety

Counseling

Behavioral training may also help. For instance, friendship training teaches kids social skills for interacting with their peers. Executive function training may improve skills such as self-control, reasoning, and understanding cause and effect. Children with FAS might also need academic help. For example, a math tutor could help a child who struggles in school.

Parents and siblings might also need help in dealing with the challenges this condition can cause. This help can come through talk therapy or support groups. Parents can also receive parental training tailored to the needs of their children. Parental training teaches you how to best interact with and care for your child.

Alternative treatments

Some parents and their children seek alternative treatments outside of the medical establishment. These include healing practices, such as massage and acupuncture (the placement of thin needles into key body areas). Alternative treatments also include movement techniques, such as exercise or yoga.

Prevention

How can I prevent fetal alcohol syndrome?

You can avoid fetal alcohol syndrome by not drinking alcohol during pregnancy. If you’re a woman with a drinking problem who wants to get pregnant, seek help from a doctor. If you’re a light or social drinker, don’t drink if you think you might become pregnant anytime soon. Remember, the effects of alcohol can make a mark during the first few weeks of a pregnancy. Visit these blogs for more tips and information about fetal alcohol syndrome.

 

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Sun Stories: Summer – Astonished – Part 1

Summer has resigned from the salon. With school, and holiday winter break she’s over it. I think what happens to these girls they just get tired of all of the people who come in here to tan. Mostly the women just start to annoy them. It’s happened to a lot of the girls who have worked here.

I miss her and occasionally reach out to her because I’m fond of her. We mostly text.

“I feel like we’re drifting apart because we don’t work together anymore.”

“Aww no! I’ve been dealing with so much shit I haven’t been myself.”

 

Thursday

“Happy Thanksgiving!”

“Happy Thanksgiving!”

 

Sunday

“Hello”

“I was just telling Kita today how much I missed you. I told her I was going to text you to see if you would visit me at the salon… and here you are! How are you?”

“Ha Ha is she working there yet?”

“Not till January.”

“Ohhh Gotcha. Did Achilles leave my final pay?”

“I haven’t seen it. Should I tell him you’re coming in this week to get it?”

“Yea, or I can text him either one…. I have terrible, terrible news as well.”

“What happened, Summer?”

“Charles I’m pregnant. You can’t tell anyone though. I found out on fucking Tuesday.”

“What………………….The………………………………….FUCK?”

“Yup.”

“Do you know who the father is?” (a feeble attempt at levity in the face of great adversity)

“Jake.” (her boyfriend of two years)

“Does he know?”

“Yea. He made me take the test. I had to tell my parents and he told his.”

“What are you going to do?”

“Well there’s not much I can do. I went to the doctor to see if I could get an abortion. Guess how far along I am?”

“No idea.”

“Take a guess.”

“Two months.”

“Six months since yesterday.”

“What the fuck??? Didn’t you notice you hadn’t gotten your period in all that time?”

“My period is so messed up I haven’t gotten it in over a year. It’s always been messed up.”

“Ok. I’m stunned. So what’s the plan?”

“I don’t look it at all. And I am not sure yet.”

“Well abortion is well off the table.”

“Yea. six months. That’s a legit baby.”

“So adoption or become a mom. What do the families say?”

“They all sound like they want me to keep it.”

“Well your family can afford it and probably don’t want one of their own being raised by another family.”

“Yes, that’s very true. They said not to worry about the money.”

“That’s good… so shotgun wedding for you and Jake?”

“hahahahahahahahahah Hell no!”

“Just think he broke up with you when you were pregnant with his child! (Got back together a week later) Do you know the sex of the baby?”

“I find out Wednesday. Think about all of the drinking I did since June… We’re seeing if the baby is healthy.”

“I was just thinking about that. Oh Jeez. No birth control?”

“I was on birth control since 8th grade. My liposuction surgery fucked it up. I got pregnant two weeks after it. The antibiotics canceled it out.”

“Oh shit. I hope the baby is okay. When can I see you?”

Tomorrow I’ll come in and see you.”

“Okay. see you then, Summer.”

 

Well let’s see where this journey takes poor Summer!

 

 

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