Researchers discovered that babies born to Covid-impacted families scored less on skill development tests for skills than their pre-pandemic counterparts.
New research suggests that babies born after the Covid-19 epidemic may have had delayed social and motor skills development than those who were born before.
The JAMA Pediatrics journal published the study on Tuesday.
In most areas, they had slightly lower average scores than babies born prior to the pandemic, irrespective of whether their mothers had contracted Covid-19 during pregnancy.
Using a standard evaluation tool given to parents, known as the ‘Ages and Stages Questionnaire,’ the researchers from Columbia University Irving Medical Center analyzed aspects of infant development at six months, including their ability to roll onto their stomach and how often they babble.
Roughly half the mothers studied had Covid at some point during pregnancy – with most experiencing mild symptoms or asymptomatic. Although there was no difference in scores between babies exposed to coronavirus during pregnancy and infants who weren’t, the two groups scored less on motor skills and social interaction than the other 62 pre-pandemic infants.
Researchers also found that babies whose mothers were still in the first trimester at the peak of the pandemic had the lowest levels of neurodevelopment. However, there were no drops in any other areas such as problem-solving or communication skills.
Although the results weren’t as expected, “large differences”The scores were not indicative for long-term development delays, but Dani Dumitriu, the lead author of this article said that they are “warrant careful attention”They could have been a “significant public health impact”If the same were true for a “population level.”
Results suggest that these extraordinary times were characterized by a lot of stress for pregnant mothers.
The study didn’t measure maternal stress in pregnancy. However, Dumitriu said to NBC News that infants likely suffered from being raised in an environment with lockdowns, unemployment, or homelessness.
Researchers suggested that other factors could explain the decline in motor and social skills such as reduced play dates or interactions with stressed caregivers.