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Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(7)2022 Apr 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1785656

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: This qualitative study aimed to explore the experiences of women with vision impairments regarding the meaning of motherhood and their mothering-related issues and priorities. METHODS: In-depth individual, semi-structured interviews were conducted between July and December 2020 with a group of visually impaired mothers residing in Italy. The interviews explored experiences related to pregnancy, childbirth, and motherhood; support received from partners, family, and friends; ways of interacting and communicating with the child; and the participants' sense of personal self-efficacy and self-awareness. RESULTS: Fifteen women participated in this study, ten with a congenital visual impairment and five with an acquired disability. The mean age of the sample was 49 years. The qualitative content analysis of the transcripts of the interviews pointed out four main themes or categories: (1) pregnancy and motherhood experiences, (2) family and social support, (3) relationship and communication with the child, and (4) self-efficacy and self-awareness. CONCLUSIONS: This study underlined that mothers with visual impairments show a strong desire to be recognized and accepted as women and mothers by their social environment. Adequate social and family support is associated with a better sense of personal self-efficacy and greater confidence in one's skills as a mother.


Subject(s)
Disabled Persons , Mothers , Child , Female , Humans , Middle Aged , Parturition , Pregnancy , Qualitative Research , Social Support
3.
BMC Pregnancy Childbirth ; 22(1): 304, 2022 Apr 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1779619

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Expectant parents worldwide have experienced changes in the way they give birth as a result of COVID-19, including restrictions relating to access to birthing units and the presence of birthing partners during the birth, and changes to birth plans. This paper reports the experiences of women in England. METHODS: Data were obtained from both closed- and open-ended responses collected as part of the national COVID in Context of Pregnancy, Infancy and Parenting (CoCoPIP) Study online survey (n = 477 families) between 15th July 2020 - 29th March 2021. Frequency data are presented alongside the results of a sentiment analysis; the open-ended data was analysed thematically. RESULTS: Two-thirds of expectant women reported giving birth via spontaneous vaginal delivery (SVD) (66.1%) and a third via caesarean section (CS) (32.6%) or 'other' (1.3%). Just under half (49.7%) of the CS were reported to have been elective/planned, with 47.7% being emergencies. A third (37.4%) of participants reported having no changes to their birth (as set out in their birthing plan), with a further 25% reporting COVID-related changes, and 37.4% reporting non-COVID related changes (e.g., changes as a result of birthing complications). One quarter of the sample reported COVID-related changes to their birth plan, including limited birthing options and reduced feelings of control; difficulties accessing pain-relief and assistance, and feelings of distress and anxiety. Under half of the respondents reported not knowing whether there could be someone present at the birth (44.8%), with 2.3% of respondents reporting no birthing partner being present due to COVID-related restrictions. Parental experiences of communication and advice provided by the hospital prior to delivery were mixed, with significant stress and anxiety being reported in relation to both the fluctuating guidance and lack of certainty regarding the presence of birthing partners at the birth. The sentiment analysis revealed that participant experiences of giving birth during the pandemic were predominately negative (46.9%) particularly in relation to the first national lockdown, with a smaller proportion of positive (33.2%) and neutral responses (19.9%). CONCLUSION: The proportion of parents reporting birthing interventions (i.e., emergency CS) was higher than previously reported, as were uncertainties related to the birth, and poor communication, leading to increased feelings of anxiety and high levels of negative emotions. The implications of these findings are discussed.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Cesarean Section , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cesarean Section/psychology , Communicable Disease Control , England/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Pandemics , Parturition/psychology , Pregnancy
4.
Taiwan J Obstet Gynecol ; 61(2): 404, 2022 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1773808
5.
BMC Health Serv Res ; 21(1): 1364, 2021 Dec 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1759744

ABSTRACT

In the spring of 2020, the SARS-CoV-2 virus caused the Covid-19 pandemic, bringing with it drastic changes and challenges for health systems and medical staff. Among the affected were obstetricians and midwives, whose close physical contact with pregnant women, women who recently gave birth, and their children was indispensable. In the obstetric setting, births cannot be postponed, and maternity staff had to adapt to assure obstetric safety while balancing evidence-based standards with the new challenges posed by the pandemic. This scoping review gives a comprehensive overview of the effecs the Covid-19 pandemic had on maternity staff. We followed the evidence-based approach described by Arksey & O'Malley: we searched several databases for English and German articles published between January 2020 and January 2021 that discussed or touched upon the effects the pandemic had on maternity staff in OECD countries and China. We found that structural challenges caused by the crisis and its subjective effects on maternity staff fell into two main topic areas. Structural challenges (the first main topic) were divided into five subtopics: staff shortages and restructuring; personal protective equipment and tests; switching to virtual communication; handling women with a positive SARS-CoV-2 infection; and excluding accompanying persons. The pandemic also strongly affected the staff's mental health (the second main topic.) Attempting to meet challenges posed by the pandemic while afraid of contamination, suffering overwork and exhaustion, and struggling to resolve ethical-moral dilemmas had severe negative subjective effects. Several studies indicated increased depression, anxiety, stress levels, and risk of post-traumatic stress symptoms, although the crisis also generated strong occupational solidarity. Care for pregnant, birthing, and breast-feeding women cannot be interrupted, even during a pandemic crisis that requires social distancing. Maternity staff sometimes had to abandon normal standards of obstetric care and were confronted with enormous challenges and structural adjustments that did not leave them unscathed: their mental health suffered considerably. Researchers should study maternity staff's experiences during the pandemic to prepare recommendations that will protect staff during future epidemics.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Midwifery , Child , Female , Humans , Pandemics/prevention & control , Parturition , Pregnancy , SARS-CoV-2
6.
Fam Syst Health ; 40(1): 126-131, 2022 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1751688

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted individuals across the world, and in particular, dramatically affected the experience of pregnancy and childbirth for many expectant mothers. The transition to parenthood is a time of increased risk for mental health problems, and maternal prenatal stress is associated with long-term maternal and infant health implications. The current study explored whether COVID-19 related changes to mothers' childbirth plans and prenatal health care experiences during the first wave of pandemic lockdowns in the U.S. were associated with self-reported depression, anxiety, and stress. METHOD: In spring 2020; we surveyed 641 pregnant women on their pregnancy and birth plans, as well as their mental health, during the COVID-19 pandemic. RESULTS: Women anticipating changes to the presence of their partner at birth also reported heightened symptoms of depression, anxiety, and stress. Additionally, women who anticipated changes to the timing of delivery reported both higher anxiety and higher perceived stress. DISCUSSION: These findings extend initial work suggesting increased risk for mental health problems in pregnant women during the COVID-19 pandemic by highlighting specific pandemic-related disruptions to pregnancy and birth that may have contributed to prenatal distress. Monitoring and intervention for these mothers and their infants are warranted. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2022 APA, all rights reserved).


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Anxiety/etiology , Anxiety/psychology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control , Female , Humans , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Parturition/psychology , Pregnancy
7.
JBI Evid Synth ; 20(3): 723-724, 2022 03 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1742952
9.
Z Geburtshilfe Neonatol ; 226(1): 16-24, 2022 02.
Article in German | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1709844

ABSTRACT

Since the onset of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, the German Society of Gynecology and Obstetrics and the Society for Peri-/Neonatal Medicine have published and repeatedly updated recommendations for the management of SARS-CoV-2 positive pregnancies and neonates. As a continuation of existing recommendations, the current update addresses key issues related to the prenatal, perinatal, and postnatal care of pregnant women, women who have recently given birth, women who are breastfeeding with SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19, and their unborn or newborn infants, based on publications through September 2021. Recommendations and opinions were carefully derived from currently available scientific data and subsequently adopted by expert consensus. This guideline - here available in the short version - is intended to be an aid to clinical decision making. Interpretation and therapeutic responsibility remain with the supervising local medical team, whose decisions should be supported by these recommendations. Adjustments may be necessary due to the rapid dynamics of new evidence. The recommendations are supported by the endorsement of the professional societies: German Society for Perinatal Medicine (DGPM), German Society of Gynecology and Obstetrics (DGGG), German Society for Prenatal and Obstetric Medicine (DGPGM), German Society for Pediatric Infectiology (DGPI), Society for Neonatology and Pediatric Intensive Care Medicine (GNPI).


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pregnancy Complications, Infectious , Child , Female , Humans , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Pandemics , Parturition , Pregnancy , Pregnancy Complications, Infectious/diagnosis , Pregnancy Complications, Infectious/epidemiology , Pregnancy Complications, Infectious/therapy , SARS-CoV-2
11.
Complement Ther Clin Pract ; 47: 101566, 2022 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1706147

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: This study aims to examine the effectiveness of a live online Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program in preventing distress, anxiety and childbirth fear in pregnant women diagnosed with COVID-19. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Designed as a randomized-controlled trial, this study was performed with the participation of pregnant women who were diagnosed with COVID-19. The sample comprised 84 pregnant women, including 42 in the experimental group and 42 in the control group. The online MBSR program composed of eight sessions and lasting four weeks was provided to the pregnant women in the experimental group, whereas such an initiative was not provided to the control group. The data were collected via the Revised Prenatal Distress Questionnaire (NuPDQ), the Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI), and the Childbirth Attitudes Questionnaire (CAQ). RESULTS: After the MBSR program, the mean NuPDQ, BAI and CAQ scores of the pregnant women in the experimental group were significantly lower than the mean scores of those in the control group (p < 0.001). CONCLUSION: The online MBSR program may be utilized to reduce the distress, anxiety and childbirth fear levels of pregnant women diagnosed with COVID-19. By using the MBSR program, health professionals might improve the psychological well-being of pregnant women diagnosed with COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Mindfulness , Anxiety/psychology , Depression/psychology , Fear , Female , Humans , Parturition/psychology , Pregnancy , Pregnant Women/psychology , Stress, Psychological/therapy
12.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(4)2022 02 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1690251

ABSTRACT

There has been concern about the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on women's mental health during the perinatal period. We conducted a cross-sectional web-based study aimed at evaluating the psychological impact (BSI-18) of the COVID-19 pandemic on this population and collecting information on the perinatal experiences (COPE-IS) during the second Italian wave. Overall, 1168 pregnant women, and 940 within the first six months after childbirth, were recruited in selected Italian Family Care Centers from October 2020 to May 2021. The prevalence of psychological distress symptoms during pregnancy was 12.1% and 9.3% in the postnatal group. Financial difficulties, a previous mood or anxiety disorder and lack of perceived social support and of support provided by health professionals were associated to psychological distress symptoms in both groups. A third of the women felt unsupported by their social network; 61.7% of the pregnant women experienced changes in antenatal care; 21.2% of those in the postnatal period gave birth alone; more than 80% of the participants identified access to medical and mental health care and self-help as important resources in the present context. Health services should assure enhanced support to the most vulnerable women who face the perinatal period during the pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Anxiety/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Pandemics , Parturition/psychology , Pregnancy , SARS-CoV-2 , Stress, Psychological/epidemiology
13.
J Perinat Neonatal Nurs ; 36(1): 46-54, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1691757

ABSTRACT

Maternity care services were significantly altered with the start of the global pandemic in 2020, challenging the ways care was provided for families during childbirth. This qualitative analysis focuses on maternity care professionals' perceptions of the impact of COVID-19 on maternity care in Michigan early in the pandemic. The question "How has COVID-19 impacted your work?" was embedded into a survey focused on maternity unit culture in process across Michigan. Directed content analysis was applied to the open text responses to identify themes. From April-June 2020, 1071 surveys were completed by nurses, physicians, and midwives; 647 (60%) included responses to the COVID-19 question. Five themes emerged: (1) provider health; (2) patient care impact; (3) burdens of personal protective equipment; (4) decreased support during labor due to visitor restrictions; and (5) ethical challenges and moral distress between concerns for self and carrying out professional roles. Maternity care providers in Michigan experienced a range of complex challenges due to the pandemic, with many experiencing conflicts and questioning their role as a provider amid concerns of the effects of COVID-19 on themselves and their families. Resources are necessary to support providers who experience distress to promote well-being and retention of this essential workforce.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Maternal Health Services , Female , Humans , Pandemics , Parturition , Pregnancy , Qualitative Research , SARS-CoV-2
14.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(3)2022 01 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1686743

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Postpartum depression is commonly experienced by mothers worldwide and is associated with anxiety disorders, parenting stress, and other forms of distress, which may lead to a complex illness condition. Several studies have investigated the risk factors for this disorder, including biological and socio-demographic variables, medical and obstetric factors, and psychological and relational dimensions. The present study aimed to describe the psychological status of mothers up to 12 months postpartum, and to investigate the predictors of depressive symptoms at 12 months postpartum, considering obstetric factors along with psychological and relational variables. METHODS: A sample of 137 women completed a questionnaire composed of a sheet on anamnestic and obstetric information and the following scales: Wijma Delivery Experience Questionnaire; State-Trait Anxiety Inventory; Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale; Parenting Stress Index (Short Form); Dyadic Adjustment Scale; and Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support. Data were collected at four assessment times: 2-3 days, 3 months, 6 months, and 12 months postpartum. RESULTS: Findings showed that the highest percentage of women with clinically significant symptoms of anxiety (state and trait) and depression was found at 12 months postpartum, which indicated that this was the most critical time. The quality of childbirth experience and trait anxiety at three months postpartum emerged as significant predictors of postpartum depression at 12 months. CONCLUSION: Our findings highlight the importance of providing stable programs (such as educational programs) to mothers in the first year postpartum. Furthermore, because the quality of the childbirth experience is one of the most important predictors of PPD at 12 months postpartum, effort should be made by healthcare professionals to guarantee a positive experience to all women to reduce possible negative long-term consequences of this experience.


Subject(s)
Depression, Postpartum , Anxiety/epidemiology , Anxiety/psychology , Depression/psychology , Depression, Postpartum/diagnosis , Female , Humans , Longitudinal Studies , Mothers/psychology , Parturition/psychology , Postpartum Period/psychology , Pregnancy , Psychiatric Status Rating Scales , Risk Factors , Surveys and Questionnaires
15.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(3)2022 Feb 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1674621

ABSTRACT

Mental health is especially important as women transition into parenthood. The COVID-19 pandemic has necessitated the rapid reconfiguration of maternity services, including perinatal mental healthcare, as offered by Specialist Perinatal Mental Health Midwives, in NHS Trusts in the United Kingdom. This article represents work undertaken in rapid response to the COVID-19 pandemic and aims to document the findings from March 2020 up until May 2021 in literature published on perinatal mental health through the pandemic, as well as to engage in a knowledge mapping exercise across five NHS Trusts in London. In this research, we utilised a critical review methodology which purposefully selects and synthesises materials after extensive literature searching to provide a broad and informed narrative around an issue. For our knowledge mapping exercise, we utilised an inclusive stance to gather, pool, and synthesise data from five NHS Trusts regarding the provisions and reconfigurations of their perinatal mental health services, creating a comparable and translatable snapshot in time. Our rapid, critical review highlighted two themes: 'Increased Perinatal Distress' and 'Inaccessible Services and Support'. Our knowledge mapping exercise produced four themes: 'Retention of Existing Service Provision'; 'Additional Services Provided'; 'Reconfiguration of Service Provision'; 'Additional Provision to Support Staff Wellbeing'. We conclude by offering best practice guidance in order to provide shared learning to aid the transition through para-pandemic circumstances to service delivery in a post-pandemic 'new normal'.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Female , Humans , Mental Health , Pandemics , Parturition , Pregnancy , SARS-CoV-2
16.
Environ Res ; 207: 112161, 2022 05 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1670475

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Congenital anomalies (CAs) are the leading causes for children's disabilities and mortalities worldwide. The associations between air pollution and CAs are not fully characterized in fetuses born by in vitro fertilization (IVF) who are at high risk of congenital anomalies. METHODS: We conducted a cross-sectional study including 16,971 IVF cycles from three hospitals in Hebei Province, China, 2014-2019. Air quality data was obtained from 149 air monitoring stations. Individual average daily concentrations of PM2.5, PM10, NO2, SO2, CO, and O3 were estimated by spatiotemporal kriging method. Exposure windows were divided into 5: preantral follicle period, antral follicle period, germinal period, embryonic period and early fetal period. Logistic generalized estimating equations were used to estimate the associations between air pollutants and overall or organ-system specific congenital anomalies. Negative control exposure method was used to detect and reduce bias of estimation. RESULTS: We found increasing levels of PM2.5 and PM10 were associated with higher risk of overall congenital anomalies during early fetal period, equating gestation 10-12 weeks (OR: 1.05, 95% CI: 1.02-1.09, p = 0.013 for a 10 µg/m3 increase of PM2.5; OR: 1.03, 95% CI: 1.01-1.06, p = 0.021 for a 10 µg/m3 increase of PM10). Cleft lip and cleft palate were associated with PM10 in germinal period and early fetal period. The CAs of eye, ear, face and neck were related to CO in preantral follicle stage. We did not find an association between chromosome abnormalities and air pollution exposure. CONCLUSIONS: We concluded that ambient air pollution was a risk factor for congenital anomalies in the fetuses conceived through IVF, especially exposure in early fetal period.


Subject(s)
Air Pollutants , Air Pollution , Air Pollutants/analysis , Air Pollutants/toxicity , Air Pollution/analysis , Air Pollution/statistics & numerical data , Child , China/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Fertilization in Vitro , Humans , Particulate Matter/analysis , Particulate Matter/toxicity , Parturition , Pregnancy
17.
Int J Gynaecol Obstet ; 157(2): 405-417, 2022 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1653242

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: Investigate the quality of maternal and newborn care (QMNC) during childbirth in the first year of COVID-19 pandemic in Italy, from the mothers' perspective, as key service users. METHODS: Women who gave birth in an Italian facility from March 1, 2020 to February 29, 2021 answered an online questionnaire including 40 WHO Standard-based Quality Measures. Descriptive and multivariate quantile regression analyses were performed. RESULTS: In total, 4824 women were included, reporting heterogeneity of practices across regions: among 3981 women who underwent labour 78.4% (63.0%-92.0%) were not allowed a companion of choice, 44.6% (28.9%-53.3%) had difficulties in attending routine antenatal visits, 36.3% (24.9%-61.1%) reported inadequate breastfeeding support, 39.2% (23.3%-62.2%) felt not involved in medical choices, 33.0% (23.9%-49.3%) experienced unclear communication from staff, 24.8% (15.9%-39.4%) were not always treated with dignity and 12.7% (10.1%-29.3%) reported abuses. Findings in the group of women who did not experience labour were substantially similar. Multivariate analyses confirmed a significant lower QMNC index for regions in southern Italy compared to North and Central regions. CONCLUSION: Mothers reported substantial inequities in the QMNC across Italian regions. Future studies should monitor QMNC over time. Meanwhile, actions to ensure high QMNC for all mothers and newborns across Italy are urgently required.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , COVID-19/epidemiology , Delivery, Obstetric , Female , Humans , Infant, Newborn , Italy/epidemiology , Pandemics , Parturition , Pregnancy , Quality of Health Care
18.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(2)2022 Jan 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1613793

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus emerged in the world at the end of 2019. The introduction of a number of restrictions had a significant effect on numerous aspects of human life with particular influence being exerted on pregnant women and their sense of security. The study aimed to assess the level of anxiety and its main determinants in women in the third trimester of pregnancy during the coronavirus pandemic. The study technique included the present purposely designed questionnaire, Labor Anxiety Questionnaire (KLPII), and the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI). The study was conducted in a group of 315 women in the third trimester of pregnancy. A total of 258 women (81.9%) completed the questionnaire in May 2020, and 57 of them (18.1%) completed it in October 2020. The overall analysis of the Labor Anxiety Questionnaire and the STAI inventory revealed a high level of anxiety, particularly situational anxiety, in pregnant women during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. The age and financial status of the women were the factors which contributed to the intensification of tokophobia. Women interviewed in October 2020 were characterized by higher tokophobia levels compared to the respondents included in May 2020. It seems justified to in-crease the vigilance in the diagnostics of possible mental disorders in the perinatal period during pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Anxiety/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Depression , Female , Humans , Pandemics , Parturition , Poland/epidemiology , Pregnancy , Pregnant Women , Prospective Studies , Stress, Psychological
19.
BMJ Open ; 12(1): e054145, 2022 01 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1607701

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: Health system resilience can increase a system's ability to deal with shocks like floods. Studying health systems that currently exhibit the capacity for resilience when shocked could enhance our understanding about what generates and influences resilience. This study aimed to generate empirical knowledge on health system resilience by exploring how public antenatal and childbirth health services in Cambodia have absorbed, adapted or transformed in response to seasonal and occasional floods. DESIGN: A qualitative study using semi-structured interviews and thematic analysis and informed by the Dimensions of Resilience Governance framework. SETTING: Public sector healthcare facilities and health departments in two districts exposed to flooding. PARTICIPANTS: Twenty-three public sector health professionals with experience providing or managing antenatal and birth services during recent flooding. RESULTS: The theme 'Collaboration across the system creates adaptability in the response' reflects how collaboration and social relationships among providers, staff and the community have delineated boundaries for actions and decisions for services during floods. Floods were perceived as having a modest impact on health services. Knowing the boundaries on decision-making and having preparation and response plans let staff prepare and respond in a flexible yet stable way. The theme was derived from ideas of (1) seasonal floods as a minor strain on the system compared with persistent, system-wide organisational stresses the system already experiences, (2) the ability of the health services to adjust and adapt flood plans, (3) a shared purpose and working process during floods, (4) engagement at the local level to fulfil a professional duty to the community, and (5) creating relationships between health system levels and the community to enable flood response. CONCLUSION: The capacity to absorb and adapt to floods was seen among the public sector services. Strategies that enhance stability and flexibility may foster the capacity for health system resilience.


Subject(s)
Floods , Health Workforce , Cambodia , Female , Humans , Parturition , Pregnancy , Qualitative Research
20.
Midwifery ; 105: 103229, 2022 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1586976

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Approximately one-fifth of pregnant women suffer from anxiety and/or depression. These mental health conditions are associated with increased infant and maternal morbidity. Relaxation massage has the potential to improve mental health and may provide a vaulable option for pregnant women. This paper reports on participants' experiences of partner delivered massage as a technique to manage mild antenatal anxiety. METHODS: We conducted a feasibility study with 44 pregnant women who self-assessed as mildly anxious. The women were randomised into massage therapy (14 women/partner dyads) or to an active control group (13 women). 4-6 weeks after the birth of their baby, massage group participants were invited to be interviewed about their experiences; twelve women and four partners agreed. The qualitative data was analysed using reflective thematic analysis. RESULTS: Four themes emerged from the data; Supporting mental health, Connecting, Useful and adaptable and Making it happen. Partner delivered massage was an accessible and practical method to manage mild anxiety for pregnant women in this study. The massage program also provided useful skills for participants to apply in their lives after the birth of their child, which has the potential to continue to support maternal mental health as well as partner connection. CONCLUSION: Partner delivered massage offers low-cost, accessible option for pregnant women to manage their mild anxiety. These findings have particular relevance in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, where anecdotal reports indicate that antenatal stress is increasing and women may have limited access to healthcare services.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Anxiety/prevention & control , Depression , Female , Humans , Male , Massage , Parturition , Pregnancy , SARS-CoV-2
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