Frequently Asked Questions About Birth Defects

What is a birth defect?
Birth defects are abnormalities in the body from birth. Birth defects can affect a child's appearance or function or both. More than 4,000 different types of mild to severe birth defects are known.
Some birth defects can be noticed right after the baby is born, such as clubfoot or finger or foot excess. Special tests may be needed to detect other defects like congenital heart disease or deafness. Some birth defects go unnoticed until older children.
The cause of birth defects
Some birth defects occur due to genetic abnormalities or chromosomal abnormalities. These deformities can be inherited from parents to children

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Other birth defects result from the exposure of the fetus to harmful agents such as drugs, chemicals, or bacterial or viral infections.


Frequently Asked Questions About Birth Defects


Whether the health of the mother or the baby is adversely affected, to what extent depends on the type of agent, the dose, the duration of exposure and the time of exposure (in the first trimester). , the second or third trimester of pregnancy).
Sometimes a birth defect is caused by many causes. Many types of birth defects still do not know the exact cause.
Who gives birth to children at risk of birth defects?
You may be at higher risk of having a baby with a birth defect if:
Give birth when ≥ 35 years old.
Have a family history or history of birth defects.
Had a child with a birth defect

Use certain medications around the time you start to get pregnant.


Frequently Asked Questions About Birth Defects


Suffering from diabetes.
Using illegal drugs or drinking alcohol.
If you have a family history or history of birth defects, you may be offered some tests and counseling. However, most birth defects occur when a family history is normal.
Do vitamins affect birth defects?
Folic acid - a form of vitamin B2 - may help prevent neural tube defects. To be effective, you need to take this vitamin before you plan to become pregnant and continue through the first 3 months of pregnancy.
Taking too high doses of vitamin A may be associated with serious birth defects. If you take supplements that contain a variety of prenatal vitamins, the vitamin A content should not exceed 5000 units (UI).


Frequently Asked Questions About Birth Defects

Some may contain up to 25,000 units of vitamin A in each dose.
Does obesity increase the risk of birth defects?
Women who are obese before pregnancy will have an increased risk of having a baby with a birth defect. Obesity is defined as a body mass index (BMI) ≥ 30. Some common birth defects are associated with obesity such as neural tube defects, heart defects or abdominal wall abnormalities.
When a mother is obese it can also make it difficult to diagnose birth defects by ultrasound. Besides birth defects, obesity is associated with many other pregnancy problems such as gestational diabetes, pre-eclampsia, caesarean section, and infection.
How does smoking affect the fetus?
Smoking has been associated with problems during pregnancy such as placental problems and premature rupture of membranes. Possible health risks for children of mothers who smoke include: sudden infant death syndrome, hospitalization, and developmental problems.


Frequently Asked Questions About Birth Defects

Even indirect exposure to tobacco smoke can be harmful to pregnancy and newborn babies.
If I am sick and want to get pregnant, how can I reduce the risk of having a baby with a birth defect?
If you have a medical condition, it's important to see your health care provider before deciding to become pregnant. Ask about changes you need to make to your diet, medications or other areas to better control your condition before you try to get pregnant. For example, people with diabetes are a condition where their blood sugar (glucose) level is too high. Excess sugar can cause damage to organs in the mother as well as in the fetus. Therefore, controlling blood sugar levels at normal or near normal levels with diet, medications and exercise before pregnancy can help reduce the risk of having a baby with a birth defect.
Can alcohol use during pregnancy cause birth defects?
Alcohol use during pregnancy is the leading cause of mental retardation and other birth defects. One of the most serious consequences of drinking alcohol during pregnancy is the fetal alcohol toxicity syndrome.


Frequently Asked Questions About Birth Defects

Because it is still unclear how much alcohol is within the safe limits for mothers and pregnancies, pregnant women should avoid drinking beer, alcohol and other alcoholic substances.
What kinds of malformations do illegal drugs use?
Some illegal drugs can cause developmental problems for children, others can cause problems with a child's emotional, behavioral, and academic ability. Many drugs increase the risk of preterm birth and other serious problems related to childbirth. Avoid using these.

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