The World Health Organisation quotes “We still do not know if a pregnant woman with COVID-19 can pass the virus to her fetus or baby during pregnancy or delivery. To date, the virus has not been found in samples of amniotic fluid or breastmilk.”

As Coronavirus continues to spread, we are exploring and learning more about the virus and the ways to protect ourselves from it – from following social distancing to washing hands well and often and wearing masks in public. While these are the safety measures for adults, parents might wonder how they can protect their babies and toddlers.

What is Covid- 19??

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus. Most people infected with the COVID-19 virus will experience mild to moderate respiratory illness and recover without requiring
special treatment.

Will Covid-19 infects newborns???

Yes. Although in a majority of cases disease seems to be milder in young children, it’s important for parents and
caregivers to understand that children can be infected with SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19,
and can transmit it to others. It appears that women infected with the coronavirus can, in very rare cases, pass the disease to her baby. Infants can also become infected shortly after being born.

What are the signs to look for??

As babies and young toddlers cannot verbally express their symptoms, parents and caregivers should find other ways of evaluating their health, such as taking their temperature and monitoring their breathing.

  • Some signs of respiratory distress in babies includeTrusted Source:
  • Very rapid breathing, which is more than 60 breaths per minute in a newborn
  • Making snoring-like sounds when breathing
  • Sucking in the muscles surrounding the rib cage when breathing
  • Grunting
  • Flaring the nostrils in newborns
  • Some very young babies have feeding difficulties.

Safety measures to be taken!!

  • Make protection a priority: Though many new parents are thrilled to introduce their Newborn baby to family and friends, social distancing remains the best strategy to keep your baby safe from the virus.You may use social media or video conferencing platforms to connect with near ones.
  • Please breastfeed your newborn as much as possible on demand asit helps to build their immunity and resistance against infections. Research suggests that breastfed babies show little or no impact of the virus. If you are tested positive with coronavirus, you may wear a mask and continue to breastfeed your baby as your antibodies will help prevent infection your little one.
  • Mothers should wear a mask and practice hand hygiene during all contact with their neonates.
  • If a breast pump is being used and milk is being stored, ensure that everything is sterilized before use.
  • Keep the newborn in one room which has been thoroughly cleaned and disinfected using detergent and water.
  • Repeat the cleaning regularly and when the cleaning is underway, take the baby to another equally clean part of the home.
  • The birth of a child is a cause for celebration and family and friends all want to congratulate the parents and see the child. This must not happen. Mother and child must remain indoors and stay away from anyone who could be a source of infection.
  • Vaccinations should be given as usual
  • If in same room, a 2-metre distance should be maintained between mother and baby.

How newborns are affected with COVID-19??

Newborns can become infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 during childbirth or by exposure to sick caregivers after delivery. If you have COVID-19 or are waiting for test results due to symptoms, it’s recommended during hospitalization after childbirth that you wear a cloth face mask and have clean hands when caring for your newborn.

Even if COVID-19 lingers, good habits such as handwashing and physical distancing can make our world a better place for newborns.