The Blast June 2021 Issue No. 3
If you read the last BBR Blast #2 you saw that Zach Reisfeld wrote about “Birth Stats” from his experience at birth./https://betterbedrest.org/2021/05/15/the-better-bedrest-blast/ We are happy to say his son Theo was born and Zach got a set of “new stats”! Theo was 7lb 8oz and 20.5 inches long! Zach and Cara are doing well!
BBR is so proud of our Maternal Assistance Fund. To date we have given out approximately $80,000! You will hear from one recipient in this issue. We pride ourselves with our service and the emotional support we offer. It is important that women know that they need 3 weekly calls before they are considered for a grant. We are not just about the money, although we realize this important need during this time. We are also about ongoing emotional support BBR provides until a woman delivers.
Today I want to highlight this wonderful resource. This organization has many online support groups and pregnant women are welcomed. https://www.postpartum.net/get-help/psi-online-support-meetings/
In this issue you will hear from Mary Lahood, MSW and BBR Board Member talk about the positive that has come from the pandemic in terms of mental health care. We have certainly heard a lot of negative, but some of the positive has created change.
Lastly, do you buy a lot on Amazon? Do you know you can support BBR with Amazon Smile? It is so easy to set up.
Go to your App store on your phone, just download Amazon Smile. It will ask you which charity you want to support. BBR will get a small percentage of your purchases. It does not work with your regular Amazon app. By getting the Amazon Smile app, it does not change anything with your account except what you designate as your charity. We hope you will consider!
Enjoy this issue and as always, thank you for your support.
Founder, Better BedRest, Inc
THE GIFT OF TELEMEDICINE
Bed rest and pregnancy restrictions are rarely anticipated. Bed rest during a global pandemic? Well, that was not in the plan. We have all endured significant stress, trauma, and isolation this year. Study after study confirms that pregnant women have been among the most heavily impacted groups globally. Living through a pandemic with a high risk pregnancy has also meant solo trips to innumerable doctors’ appointments, stressful and highly anticipated ultrasound, stringent visitor restrictions on antepartum units, and emergency c-section and fast labors without a hand to hold. There are even more stringent visiting restrictions in NICU. Rates of prenatal (during pregnancy and to one year postpartum) mood and anxiety disorders have risen significantly. To learn more about mental health during and after pregnancy visit Postpartum Support International: www.postpartum.net/learn-more/.
But, yes! We do seem to be coming out on the other side. There is one silver lining of sorts that we will happily bring with us into life post pandemic: the widespread availability of telemedicine.
Telemedicine, also referred to telehealth, is the use of technology to provide patient care remotely. Patients can use their tablet, smart phone or computer, to have a virtual “face to face” appointment with their provider. It is covered by insurance (commercial plans and Medicaid), utilizes HIPPAA compliant platforms, and most importantly, removes barriers to care. Telemedicine is now quickly becoming the preferred avenue for treatment in mental health care.
This is great news for women on bed rest! Being prescribed bed rest or pregnancy restrictions can feel like being dropped in a lake with a sturdy life vest and being told to hang in there for one to twenty weeks. There is worry about not only the baby she carries, but also the welfare of her other children, separation from a partner, work related stress and job loss, and financial wellbeing. Women frequently feel isolated, and stress levels sky rocket. If a woman has prior mental health diagnoses, these symptoms may worsen. We know that high levels of stress and symptoms of anxiety, and depression during pregnancy are correlated with a number of poor neonatal outcomes, including premature delivery and low birth weight. For the health of the mom and her baby, women need support. Support groups, group therapy, and individual therapy can be a lifeline. There are now many virtual groups for pregnant women, but there is a vast need for groups specific to women on bed rest. Stay tuned for updates!
Mary Frances LaHood, MSW
Hasanjanzadeh, P., & Faramarzi, M. (2017). Relationship between Maternal General and Specific-Pregnancy Stress, Anxiety, and Depression Symptoms and Pregnancy Outcome. Journal of clinical and diagnostic research : JCDR, 11(4), VC04–VC07. https://doi.org/10.7860/JCDR/2017/24352.9616
In addition to support from Better Bedrest:
Perinatal Mental Health Provider Directory www.postpartum.net/get-help/provider-directory/
Keep ‘Em Cookin Live Chat www.keepemcookin.com/live-chat/
Before I spoke with anyone from Better BedRest, I was on bed rest, in the hospital, away from my child, and away from work. I received a paper letting me know about BBR from the staff social worker that explained how I could have someone call and chat with me from time to time, and could also help me with a small financial debt. Little did I know that I would connect with a woman that checked in on me as if she was my own mother. She offered me advice, gave me personal feedback, and gave a me alternatives for keeping myself “busy” while I was in the hospital for month. She always made me feel listened to, and she was always interested in whatever I needed to talk about. She checked in on me when I had the twins and even when I get home, which was truly sweet. BBR was truly a blessing in helping me keep my sanity while alone in the hospital away from my daughter and my normal living situation. This organization is needed to keep hope and to help moms stay motivated while on bed rest and stay focused on the end goal. The calls helped me remember that this hardship was just a moment and it will all be worth it in the end. Thank you Better BedRest! I do nothing but speak your praises to my family.
I had a lot of hardships due to me being put on bed rest, but you guys have helped with that tremendously and I really appreciate it. You have been a big help!
If you are considering a donation to Better BedRest, you can visit our website at https://betterbedrest.org or participate in Amazon Smile. See Founder’s Corner for details!
Have a Great Summer!