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Birth Defects Prevention Month

January is recognized as birth defects prevention month to help spread information about prevention and prenatal care.  According to the March of Dimes, one out of every 33 babies born in the United States is born with a birth defect.  A birth defect is a change in structure that is present at birth and affects any or many parts of the body.  Birth defects can range from mild to severe.  The March of Dimes is an organization that has been around for over 80 years and its purpose is to promote the health of mothers and their babies.  They raise awareness on birth defects to healthcare providers and the public as well as promote research.  The causes of many birth defects are unknown, and others can be attributed to by our lifestyle, environment and family history.  Many birth defects are formed within the first three months of a baby’s growth in the womb.  However, there has been a lot of research done to help promote and increase the chances of having healthy mothers and babies.  The March of Dimes has established a short list of some tips to help mothers and babies stay healthy during and before pregnancy, and they are as follows:

  • Take a multi-vitamin
  • See your healthcare provider regularly for check-ups
  • Keep your vaccinations up to date
  • Maintain a healthy weight before pregnancy
  • Don’t use tobacco, alcohol or other harmful substances

Help spread awareness in your community about birth defects prevention month.  For more information on birth defects prevention month and the March of Dimes, click here:  https://www.marchofdimes.org/complications/january-is-national-birth-defects-prevention-month.aspx

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