Postpartum Care

In previous posts we have discussed many do’s and don’ts during your pregnancy. This time we are going to discuss post pregnancy, or the postpartum period, and how to care for yourself so you will be able to care for your new baby.

Post pregnancy, or the postpartum period, begins after the delivery of the baby and usually ends in six to eight weeks. Now that your baby is here, your body is changing…again. The postpartum period involves many changes, both emotionally and physically, on top of learning how to deal with all the changes and adjustments required with becoming a new mother. Emotionally you will experience a wide range of emotions like stress or possibly postpartum depression. Physically you will experience perineum soreness, afterbirth pains, cesarean section pains (if you had a c-section), breast engorgement, and many other changes that we will discuss in a future blog. A mother needs to take good care of herself in order to take care of her new baby. In order to rebuild your strength, you will need plenty of rest, good nutrition, and help during the first few weeks.

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Stress and Pregnancy

When you’re striving for a healthy pregnancy, you tend to focus on things like eating well, exercising and following all of the guidelines set forth by your doctor. However, there may be something you’re forgetting that ranks right up there with avoiding high-mercury fish: your stress level. Pregnancy can be nerve-wracking; not only does it entail a lot of physical changes, but preparing to become a parent can take a lot out of you, emotionally and physically. You may figure that it’s just par for the course, but did you know that being under extreme stress while pregnant can actually cause problems for your baby?

 

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Black woman prenatal care

Prenatal Care Is Important to Reducing Rates of Premature Birth

Most infant deaths in Ohio in 2013 (most recent data available) occurred when babies were born too early. Statistics show that 46.6 percent of all infant mortality cases were because of premature births. There are many other reasons why these babies are dying; however, premature birth or pre-term is the leading cause. We discussed how smoking is a significant factor to the cause of premature births in our previous post. This time, we will be discussing prenatal care and how the importance of it and/or the lack of it contributes to premature births.

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smoking

Significance of Smoking and Premature Birth

Smoking in Ohio    

As we all know, smoking is a highly popular and deadly habit many Americans have. Specifically in Ohio, data shows that in 2014, 21.7 percent of males in Ohio smoke and 20.4 percent of females smoke. 23.4 percent of all adults in Ohio smoke (2,095,600) and ultimately, 259,000 kids under 18 in Ohio will die prematurely from smoking. (Source) 33.5 percent of African Americans are current smokers, which is significantly higher than the 25.7 percent of Whites and 21.0 percent of Hispanics who smoke. (Source)

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Premature Births Main Cause for Ohio Infant Mortality Rate

SOURCE: Ohio Department of Health, 2014 Ohio Infant Mortality Data: General Findings

African-American babies are dying at 2.5 times the rate of other babies in Ohio. When asking the question “Why?”, the answers are still being analyzed, however, there are facts that have been determined. Prematurity/Pre-term births accounts for 46.6% of the overall cause of death of babies that died before their 1st birthday in Ohio (2013 data). This is, by a large margin, the #1 cause of the overall infant mortality rate problem in our state.

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Black Babies Ohio

Welcome to the Why Black Babies Blog!

 

If you haven’t heard about us, we are here to make sure that changes. Our existence is clear and precise — to affect change in the quality of life for our African-American moms and babies.

The statistics are alarming, and the rate of change in the statistics is even more so. But we are not here to share just statistics and sad outcomes. We are here to help affect change–to provide the support that will lead to this change and focus on positive impact toward the future.

WhyBlackBabies.com was created to bring the resources, information and support directly to those who need it. The assistance has been developed and is available, but it is of no service to the issue if the individuals and families in need don’t know where to find it.

WhyBlackBabies.com is that place to go.

We are here to serve African-American moms and moms-to-be. We have brought together in one place a resource to locate what you and your child(ren) need to ensure you have healthy babies. You can find:

  • Information about pregnancy care, baby care, and post-pregnancy care for mom – More info>
  • Resources to locate what you need from doctors to baby supplies – Start here>
  • Communication tool to connect with other mothers like you – Check it out>

Tell your friends, your family — everyone needs to engage in this effort to bring our babies into the world healthy and keep them healthy!