Thursday, February 12, 2009

Ignorance of Pregnancy Causes Poor Prenatal Care

According to a Medical News Today article, the top reason women do not get prenatal care is that they don't realize they are pregnant. Michigan State University researchers found that if women simply had pregnancy tests at hand, they were more likely to suspect possible pregnancies and test themselves. Knowing of a pregnancy early gives a woman more time to stop any baby-harming behaviors before they can harm her forming child:
"Telling a woman she is pregnant will often cause her to immediately stop or cut down on smoking, drinking and other behaviors that can hurt the baby," [Dr. Mary Nettleman] said. "The problem is that many women do not recognize they are pregnant for several weeks, which is all it takes for the heart and brain to form. Earlier pregnancy recognition could have a huge impact on the health of newborns in this country."
Now I feel justified in having a pregnancy test from the dollar store stashed away in a drawer at all times. Before I felt like I was just indulging in wishful thinking! I love babies. :)

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