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  • Chloe Lewis - BirthMind

Pregnancy and Birth During Times of COVID-19

If you’re pregnant at the moment then you may be self-isolating for the foreseeable future due to the current COVID-19 pandemic. Being lucky enough to be able to stay safe at home is a privilege - but that doesn’t mean it’s easy!

Along with excitement and happiness about your impending arrival, you may also be feeling a million other things, including frustration, boredom, anxiety, uncertainty and loneliness. Occupying your mind with some fun activities and creating some structure in your day can help to manage these emotions and boost your mental health. Equally, if all you want to do is lie on the sofa and watch TV, then go for it!

Here are a few suggestions of proactive, positive things you can use to fill your time and prepare for birth and the early days with your new baby:


Relaxing your body and mind

* Relaxation, meditation, visualisation, mindfulness (check out free apps/podcasts)

* Virtual pregnancy yoga or pilates classes

* Sleep or rest whenever you feel the need

* Have a relaxing bath to soothe pregnancy aches and take pressure off your joints

* Try out different massage techniques, including ‘light touch massage’ which is great for early labour too!


Nurturing a positive mindset

* Write and say positive birth affirmations

* Avoid too much coronavirus news

* Keep a journal and make a note of anything you enjoy/appreciate each day

* Begin to create a bond by reading, talking or singing to your baby

* Feel empowered and informed, and learn from the pros by signing up for virtual classes – use the code SPRING2020 for a 10% discount on BirthMind hypnobirthing or Hello Baby antenatal classes!


Preparing for birth

* If you’re doing hypnobirthing, listen to your tracks and practise breathing exercises

* Create a music playlist for labour (you might like one really relaxing one, and one more high-energy)

* Write your birth preferences or birth plan

* From 34 weeks – try perineal massage

* Pack your bags for the hospital or birth centre, or plan your home birth set-up


Preparing for the early days


* Research ‘fourth trimester’ so you can understand your baby’s earliest needs

* Do some batch freezer cooking

* Make a postnatal plan

* Wash baby’s clothes and bedding

* From 37 weeks you may want to harvest colostrum

Keeping updated

Official guidelines are changing frequently and vary widely between countries and regions, so it’s a good idea to check with your midwife and chosen birth place on a regular basis. You may come across lots of different opinions in the news and on social media – it’s best to stick to a few trusted sources, for example (in the UK):

- World Health Organisation

- NHS

- Royal College of Midwives (RCM)

- Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG)

- Association for Improvements in the Maternity Services (AIMS) – can provide support

- Birthrights

For more hints and tips on having a positive pregnancy and birth during the COVID-19 pandemic, and for updated posts about the latest guidelines, follow us on Facebook or Instagram @birthmind_hypnobirthing and @thebusheymidwife

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