Potential benefits of Yoga in pregnancy-related complications during the COVID-19 pandemic and implications for working women.
Work (Reading, Mass.). 2020;(2):269-279
BACKGROUND Pregnancy is a vulnerable period of growth and enrichment along with many physiological and psychological challenges. These changes can lead to complications if compounded by external stress and anxiety. COVID-19 has emerged as a chief stressor among the general population and is a serious threat among vulnerable populations. Therefore, there is a need for stress management tools, such as Yoga and physical exercises, both at home and at work. These can be adopted during the pandemic with proper maintenance of social distancing. OBJECTIVE To evaluate and compile literature that has reported the health outcomes of Yoga intervention on pregnancy at the workplace and analyzes both the restrictions as well as advantages of its beneficial effects in comparison to physical exercises. METHODOLOGY A comprehensive literature review was conducted utilizing PubMed and Google Scholar. The keywords used for the search include "Yoga", "work", "complications", "physical exercise", "drugs" and "COVID" indifferent permutations and combinations with "pregnancy". We compiled the literature with respect to pregnancy complications and the effects of drugs, physical activity and Yoga for preventing these complications. RESULTS We noted that pregnancy-related complications are becoming more prevalent because of a sedentary lifestyle, restricted physical activity and growing stress. In such situations, a home or workplace Yoga protocol can combine both exercise and mindfulness-based alleviation of anxiety for both working and non-working women. CONCLUSION Yoga can be effective for combating stress and anxiety besides boosting immunity in pregnant working women confronted with the COVID-19 pandemic.