Every pregnancy, whether planned or unplanned, carries with it some degree of uncertainty and anxiety about how your life will change. With so many factors influencing your next steps—finances, education, your partner—the prospect of what’s ahead of you may seem a bit overwhelming.
Throw in a global pandemic, and it’s downright scary.
The avalanche of information and news that pummels us each day offers little encouragement during these uncertain times. Fear is powerful, and as it tightens its grip, you may find yourself struggling to come to terms with the new life growing inside of you.
You may feel internal or external pressure to make a decision about your pregnancy quickly. Because fear tends to cloud our judgment, making a major decision in that state of heightened emotion can be unwise. Fear is totally normal—but it doesn’t have to own you. Our hope is that you will be empowered to make a decision from a place of confidence rather than anxiety. In the rest of this article, we’ll tackle two things:
- What is known about Coronavirus and pregnancy
- Practical next steps you can take
“Fear is totally normal—but it doesn’t have to own you.”
What is known about Coronavirus and pregnancy
Coronavirus is primarily a respiratory disease, and symptoms will typically appear between 2 and 14 days after exposure. The most common symptoms (whether pregnant or not) are:
- Dry cough
- Shortness of breath
- Sore throat
According to the CDC, “Pregnant women experience changes in their bodies that may increase their risk of some infections. With viruses from the same family as COVID-19, and other viral respiratory infections, such as influenza, women have had a higher risk of developing severe illness.”
However, it is unknown if pregnant women have a greater chance of getting sick from COVID-19 than the general public. As of now, there hasn’t been any reported evidence that Coronavirus is transmitted from mother to baby, either prenatally or at delivery. There is also no evidence that mothers who have Coronavirus transfer the virus to their baby via breast milk.
In light of the virus, healthcare facilities that offer pregnancy care (such as your local OB/GYN or The Pregnancy Network) have taken precautionary measures to limit the number of patients in the office at a given time, maintain social distance when possible, sanitize the facility before and after appointments, and even arrange for less visits than normal.
Practical Next Steps You Can Take
Yes, the coming weeks and months are uncertain as we wait to see how COVID-19 progresses throughout our world. When faced with a major life decision in the midst of uncertain circumstances, it’s helpful to break that decision into small steps to do the next right thing in front of you. Here are 3 simple steps to get you started.
1. Confirm Your Pregnancy and Receive an Ultrasound
The Pregnancy Network offers free pregnancy tests (along with a Proof of Pregnancy) as well as free limited ultrasounds. Find out how far along you are and confirm that your pregnancy is viable. This is vital information you’ll need in order to make the healthiest decision. You can schedule a free appointment today by clicking here.
2. Review Your Options: Abortion, Adoption, or Parenting
Fear says, “You have no choice.” But the reality is that you have three options in front of you, and our community is full of resources that can equip you moving forward.
You deserve to be fully informed about each option before making a decision. At the Pregnancy Network, trained peer advocates and registered nurses will discuss each option with you in depth so that you can make the healthiest choice. Because we care about your health, we do not perform our refer for abortions. However, because we believe every woman has the right to know what is being done to her body, we do provide a comprehensive overview of abortion procedures, how they are performed, and the risks involved.
3. Ask Good Questions
Prepare a list of questions you have before going into your appointment. If you’re considering adoption, ask about what that process looks like. If you’re considering parenting, ask about the free parenting classes in your area, assistance with material resources, and what your next steps should be regarding prenatal care. If you’re considering abortion, ask about the different types of procedures, physical and emotion impacts, and possible risks associated with the procedure.
This time may seem overwhelming, but you are not alone. The Pregnancy Network is here to provide you with support during and after your pregnancy. We would love the privilege of walking with you through your decision-making process. Click here to make an appointment with us today!