In several countries, confinement seems to have had very positive effects on births. In Denmark, for example, doctors observed a 90% drop in premature births!
During the confinement linked to the Covid-19 pandemic, doctors carried out an experiment in a hospital. The goal? Measure the effects of such a decision on premature births as explained by the New York Times in an article published on July 19, 2020. In Ireland, doctors were interested in statistics from the University Maternity Hospital in Limerick. They compared the number of births taking place each year since 2001 between the months of January and April . However, during the last two decades, no less than 30,000 children weighing less than 1.5 kg have been born in this hospital.
While the trend of the last twenty years was eight premature births per thousand, this rate has been divided by four in 2020 . Even better, no premature births took place during confinement! This discovery was so surprising that the doctors initially thought it was an error in the numbers.
In Denmark, doctors thought about the same topic. The reason for this reflection is simple:in this country, neonatal intensive care units are almost empty. However, specialists have finally discovered that the birth rate of children with the 28th week of pregnancy has dropped by 90%.
The situation is the same all over the world, in countries such as Australia, Canada, the United States and the Netherlands. In Calgary (Canada), doctors noted a halving of premature births during the confinement period. In Melbourne (Australia), an investigation has begun due to an exceptional rarity of premature births.
It should be noted that for the moment, these findings have not yet been the subject of studies scientists. However, Denise Jamieson, an obstetrician at Emory University's School of Medicine in Atlanta (USA), was very surprised. Indeed, she expected a rather opposite trend. The person concerned thought that the stress related to the pandemic of Covid-19 could precisely promote premature births. However, this same stress is not necessarily the same in all countries. Indeed, the lack of social protection in certain regions as well as the financial difficulties of families appear to be aggravating factors.
In countries where this famous trend has been observed, the forced rest of mothers seems to have been very positive. They felt less stress at work, in transport, but also less risk of contracting infections usually because of staying home. In addition, the drop in pollution, particularly atmospheric, during confinement may have played a role. It will be necessary to be patient in order to know the reasons for this drop in premature births. In any case, Irish and Danish doctors have said they want to work together to find answers.