Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Moms of preemies need extra care, too

My niece was under two pounds—she’s now almost 40 with her own strapping son and my sister had no real problems after the birth.

But researchers at the Univ of Wisconsin-Madison says the stress of a low birth weight child can affect the mother’s health in a lot of cases.

To be low birth weight—the kid must be under 3.3 pounds. More than 63,000 such children are born each year.

The Wisconsin docs studied 297 mothers of babies under this limit (2003, 2004). Also—290 mothers of normal weight babies during the same time period.

Five years after the birth, the mothers of low birth weigh babies tended to have more physical problems.

The more time in the NICU, the more likely the mother was to have problems in five years.

The key to minimizing problems was a good social support network. Mothers need to tend to their own checkups and preventive steps.

So…mothers…the baby is not the only patient.

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