Did you know the March of Dimes offers Spanish language pregnancy videos too?
Posts Tagged ‘women’s health’
Dr. Siobhan Dolan talks with a woman about what she can do before pregnancy to have a healthy, full-term baby.
The March of Dimes commends the Institute of Medicine for its thoughtful recommendations in the report released yesterday, “Clinical Preventive Services for Women: Closing the Gaps.” If adopted by the federal government, these recommendations will have a significant impact in improving the health of women, infants and children.
Dr. Jennifer Howse, President of the March of Dimes, said “the March of Dimes is pleased that the panel affirmed our recommendations that insurers be required to cover, without cost-sharing, prenatal and preconception care, as well as all contraceptives approved by the Food and Drug Administration. The March of Dimes also commends the panel for recommending coverage of the services of lactation consultants and rental fees associated with breastfeeding equipment.
“The March of Dimes strongly supports the panel’s recommendations for mandatory coverage of routine prenatal care for pregnant women. Prenatal services should include not only physical examination and specific tests but also counseling on nutrition and tobacco cessation.” Last week, a comprehensive systematic review of all studies over the past 50 years demonstrated that tobacco use during pregnancy is linked to higher rates of birth defects. Given that up to 14 percent of U.S. women report smoking during pregnancy, these counseling services are critical to healthy pregnancies and healthy babies.
With regard to contraception, numerous studies have shown that pregnancies spaced too closely together present a medical risk factor for preterm birth, the principal cause of newborn death. Appropriately spacing pregnancies — for which access to family planning services is critically important — has been shown to reduce the risk of preterm birth. The Institute of Medicine has estimated that the economic cost of preterm birth totaled at least $26.2 billion in 2005, the latest year for which data was available. The medical component of that total was $18.8 billion – 85 percent of which comprised health services provided to infants.
Dr. Howse made it clear that “the March of Dimes looks forward to supporting the panel’s recommendations as the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services considers their adoption.”
National Women’s Health Week kicks off on Mother’s Day, May 8th, a day when we are already focusing on the important women in our lives. Help celebrate your mom, your step-mom, your daughters and friends by helping them stay healthy.
The theme for 2011 is “It’s Your Time.” National Women’s Health Week empowers women to make their health a top priority. It also encourages them to take steps to improve their physical and mental health and lower their risks of certain diseases. Those steps include: getting regular physical exercise; eating a balanced nutritious diet; getting regular checkups with your health care provider; stopping smoking; wearing your seatbelt; getting enough sleep and managing stress.
This year, help empower women nationwide to make their health a priority by celebrating National Women’s Health Week and holding events in your local community. You can even register your activities on the National Women’s Health Week website and order free educational materials to distribute — including posters, bookmarks, prevention guides, brochures, and more! It’s easy — just go to http://www.womenshealth.gov/whw/my-account/register.cfm and follow the steps.
Help the women you love stay healthy. And have a wonderful Mother’s Day!
A certified nurse-midwife is a registered nurse with advanced, specialized training and experience in taking care of pregnant women and delivering babies. Certified nurse-midwives are licensed to provide care before, during and after delivery.
The American College of Nurse Midwives has great information about midwifery on their web site. You will see that they are primary health care providers to women throughout the lifespan. They perform physical exams, prescribe meds including contraception, order lab tests, provide prenatal care, gynecological care, labor and birth care, as well as health education and counseling to women of all ages.
If you are interested in talking to a midwife, the Find a Midwife practice locator is a web-based service that allows you to find midwifery practices in your area. It also supplies you with basic contact information like practice name, address, phone number, e-mail address, web site and a map of the area. Check it out.
I was looking through a national health observances calendar the other day and discovered that, among other things, this is Cervical Health Awareness Month. It was a good reminder to me to schedule an annual check up.
Most women I know don’t relish the thought of having their next Pap smear - I mean really, I can think of a lot of other things I’d rather be doing - but they do eventually get around to it. I remember as a busy mom, however, how easy it was to put myself last. Yep, I’d take the kids to the doc, get their vaccinations, take the hubby to the optometrist or the dog to the vet… but somehow time easily marched by before I stopped slacking off and remembered to take care of myself. And then one year when I finally did go, I was shocked to find a bad result which eventually led to surgery. Not an avenue I’d recommend.
Did you know that some cervical surgery may cause a condition known as cervical insufficiency that can lead to premature birth? Vaginal infections, like Group B strep or sexually transmitted infections, can pose special risks for pregnant women and their babies.
So ladies, make sure you get with the program. Go for your annual check up. If there is an early sign of an infection or problem, you can nip it in the bud. It’s important for you, your future children and the family that loves you.
Today is International Women’s Day, commemorating the great achievements made by women every day, all over the world. Let’s celebrate our womanhood! Learn more about International Woman’s Day.
Image credit: InternationalWomensDay.com
OK, I confess; sometimes, if I’m not feeling well or some part of my body is bothering me, I turn to the Web first to try and find the culprit. I don’t intend to diagnose myself, but sometimes the convenience of having all that information at my fingertips makes it too easy. And I don’t think I’m alone. The Washington Post published an article earlier this month on the increasing use of the Internet to search for health topics. The article also mentions a new term, “cyberchondriac,” which is similar to a hypochondriac except that the person uses the Web to further her fears and anxiety about her health. Thankfully, that’s not me!
But even though I’m turning to the Web for more information, I try not to let my amateur medical research get in the way of me seeing my health provider regularly or when there’s a problem. While the Internet can be a useful tool, there’s also a lot of junk out there, so I try to make sure that the information I’m getting is from a good source.
Here are some tips that can help you know if a Web site is a good source for health information:
• Find out who sponsors the Web site. Knowing what organization or company pays for the site can help you determine if the site’s information is credible.
• Look at the Web address to know what kind of organization it is. Government sites end in .gov; educational institutions end in .edu; professional organizations (scientific or research) end in .org; and business or commercial sites end in .com. Some health Web sites that end in .com can offer credible information (for example, hospitals or health organizations). Be sure that the .com site discloses any sponsorship for its health information or if it endorses any products or services.
• Science and medical recommendations change over time. Make sure the Web site and information is updated frequently and lists when the information was last revised.
• Information on the site should be based on facts and able to be verified. Any opinions should be clearly identified as such.
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) today announced new guidelines on Pap smears and cervical cancer screenings. The organization says that women can wait until they’re age 21 to have their first Pap tests. ACOG also says that women between the ages of 21 and 30 should have a Pap test and cervical cancer screening once every two years instead of once every year. Women aged 30 and older who’ve had no previous complications in their last three screenings can have a Pap test once every three years.
The organization revised its recommendations based on the latest research about Pap tests and cervical cancer rates, showing that most cervical cancer cases come from women who don’t regularly see health care providers. ACOG also says that data shows testing at two and three year intervals can be just as effective at preventing cervical cancer.
While these recommendations represent a shift in women’s health care, talk to your health provider about what is best for you.
We’re pleased to offer this free educational webinar, “A Healthy State of Body and Mind for Conception… at Every Stage of the Process.” Join us on Wednesday May 6th at 8 PM EST (7 CT, 6 MT, 5 PT) for a one-hour discussion.
Fertility Practitioner & March of Dimes Nurses Advisory Council member Kit Devine, ARNP, MSN and Mental Health Professional Robin Roberts, LCSW, PhD will provide participants with information and resources on preparing your body and mind for conception.
• Educating about vitamins, the risks of smoking, weight, keeping a menstrual diary, eating choices, caffeine intake, hot tubs/sauna use and more…
• Providing direction to March of Dimes resources for lifestyle choices enhancing women’s’ overall health
• Understanding the seven stages of coping with infertility and how to mentally find your resolution
• Using RESOLVE as a resource during your family building journey
Register today by opening this link and filling out the form.
Questions about this Webinar? Please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
This Webinar is offered from a partnership between RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association and the March of Dimes.