Monthly News

 Monthly News

Pregnancy and Anxiety in the Time of a Pandemic

Heather W. Cintron, Psy.D.

Barnes & Klatt, P.C.

The emergence of COVID-19 brought uncertainty, fear, grief, and adjustment to the expectations and unknowns around us. The pandemic also brought many changes to the lives of the general public, partners, parents, and children. It was predicted COVID-19 would result in a baby boom due to lockdowns imposed upon us by government officials and individuals spending more time together.  Despite the predictions, quite the opposite occurred.

Though only a minimal amount of states reported, according to the Center for Disease Control and the Brookings Institute, the birth rate fell by roughly 13%. It is postulated births declined due to fear regarding the health of both the mother and fetus, as well as mental health concerns regarding the fear of developmental changes and a sense of isolation experienced by the mother. This fear was compounded by testing of the COVID-19 vaccine, which did not include pregnant women.

Anxiety levels in pregnant women significantly changed during COVID-19. According to the Brookings Institute, roughly 29% of pregnant women reported experiencing anxiety prior to COVID-19, while 72% reported experiencing anxiety during the pandemic. Barnes & Klatt, P.C. can assist in the management, not only of anxiety, but also the experience of isolation, and fear of the ability to parent without available support. We have recently received an influx of new mothers who are experiencing anxiety when raising their newborn, as they are comparing themselves to mothers whom gave birth prior to the pandemic and had different experiences. We are also finding the partners of new mothers are deeply impacted, as anxiety in the mother can trigger anxiety in the partner leading to a cycle of emotions and, frequently, even helplessness.

In general, there has been an increase in anxiety and depression during COVID-19. We can assist you in learning ways to manage the emotions wrapped up in caring for a child, at any stage in your life, regardless of how many children you have. We can also help you learn how to take care of yourself. Don’t doubt yourself or your spouse or your ability. Contact us at 847-981-9200 to schedule an appointment. You are not alone on this journey. Let us help.


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