- See your doctor early and regularly in your pregnancy for prenatal care.
- Talk to your provider about how to protect yourself from infections.
- Eat a variety of healthy foods, drink lots of water and take prenatal vitamins.
- Avoid alcohol, smoking or use of illegal or prescription drugs. Support through programs such as Baby and Me Tobacco Free can help.
- Seek help and advice from medical professionals for diabetes, high blood pressure, depression or other health problems.
- Talk to your provider about a healthy weight gain.
- If you have had a premature baby or have a short cervix, ask your doctor about progesterone therapy. Appropriate progesterone treatment lowers the risk of preterm birth better than any other.
- Waiting until baby is 18-24 months old before becoming pregnant again makes a healthier choice for mom and baby.
“We’ve seen a slight improvement in Ohio’s numbers, from 1 in 8 to 1 in 9 babies born premature, which is encouraging but we also know more needs to be done,” said Robin Naples, prematurity initiatives program coordinator and Maternal Fetal Medicine social worker, Akron Children’s Hospital. “Akron Children’s is committed to working with state and local committees, as well as internal groups, to improve education and support programs to make sure families have the tools they need to provide a healthy, caring environment for their baby at home.”
In support of Prematurity Awareness Month in November, Akron Children’s is once again putting a spotlight on the numbers associated with preterm births to help raise awareness for this often preventable health crisis.