The week’s best parenting advice: September 29, 2020

How does COVID-19 affect pregnant women? New research is providing some answers to this question, and the findings “should be somewhat reassuring,” gynecologist Denise Jamieson tells NPR’s All Things Considered. While it does seem the virus can sometimes cross into the placenta, “there isn’t evidence that when this happens there is an association with birth defects the way we found with viruses like Zika,” Jamieson says. However, as University of Oregon’s Jennifer Ablow and Oregon Health and Science university’s Elinor Sullivan note at The Conversation, “the long-term influence of the virus on the developing child is not yet known.” Still, the obvious risk to anyone pregnant, they think, is pandemic-induced stress. Anxiety and stress has been linked to all kinds of problems in pregnancy, including low birth weight. “To make stress tolerable,” they write, “adequate social support, access to supportive resources, and economic stability are necessary.” [NPR, The Conversation]

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