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Although most babies are born healthy, parents-to-be often worry about the possibility that their baby will be born with a medical condition or physical disability. A birth defect is a physical problem or intellectual disability that is present at birth, although some birth defects may not be noticed until the child is older. About 3 in 100 babies in the United States are born with a major birth defect


2.
December 2016

FAQ194, December 2016

 Contraception Why is postpartum birth control recommended? How do I choose a postpartum birth control method? What is an intrauterine device (IUD)? What are the benefits of an IUD? What are the possible risks and side effects of an IUD? What is a birth control implant? What are the benefits of an implant? What are the possible risks and side effects of an implant? What is a birth control injection? What are the benefits of an injection? What are the possible risks and side effects of an injection? What are combined hormonal methods? ...


3.
November 2016

FAQ029, November 2016

How long should I breastfeed my baby? Exclusive breastfeeding is recommended for the first 6 months of a baby’s life. Breastfeeding should continue up to the baby’s first birthday as new foods are introduced. You can keep breastfeeding after the baby’s first birthday for as long as you and your baby would like.


PFSI011 Mosquito Bite Prevention If you must travel to one of the areas where Zika virus is spreading, strictly follow these four steps to prevent mosquito bites:  Use EPA-registered bug spray with DEET, picaridin, IR3535, oil of lemon eucalyptus, paramenthane-diol, or 2-undecanone. Used as directed, these sprays are safe for pregnant and breastfeeding women.  Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants.  Treat clothing and gear with permethrin or buy permethrin-treated items.  Stay in air-conditioned or screened-in areas during the day and at night. Follow these steps at all ...


PFSI010 ››› Weeks 1–4 Weeks 5–8 Weeks 9–12 Weeks 13–16 Weeks 17–20 Weeks 21–24 • Timing: 10–13 weeks • Blood test plus NT ultrasound exam • Screens for Down • syndrome and trisomy 18 First-trimester screening Second-trimester screening (“quad screen”) • Timing: 15–22 weeks • Blood test • Screens for Down syndrome, trisomy 13, trisomy 18, and NTDs Standard ultrasound exam • Timing: 18–22 weeks • Screens for some physical defects Integrated screening and sequential screening • Timing: 10–22 weeks • Combines first-trimester and second-trimester screening test results in vari...


FAQ032, May 2016

Why is it important to be supportive during your partner’s pregnancy? Women who have an involved and supportive partner during pregnancy are more likely to give up harmful behaviors, such as smoking, and lead healthier lives. Babies may be born healthier as well, with lower rates of preterm birth and growth problems. Women who are well supported during pregnancy may be less anxious and have less stress in the weeks after childbirth. You can be supportive by educating yourself about pregnancy, going with your partner to prenatal care appointments, and joining her in making healthy lifestyle c...


FAQ052, May 2016

What is sterilization? Sterilization is a permanent method of birth control. Sterilization for women is called tubal sterilization. In tubal sterilization, the fallopian tubes are closed off or removed. Tubal sterilization prevents the egg from moving down the fallopian tube to the uterus and keeps the sperm from reaching the egg (see the FAQ011 “Sterilization for Women and Men”).


8.
April 2016

FAQ182, April 2016

Being overweight is defined as having a body mass index (BMI) of 25–29.9. Obesity is defined as having a BMI of 30 or greater. Within the general category of obesity, there are three levels that reflect the increasing health risks that go along with increasing BMI: • Lowest risk is a BMI of 30–34.9. • Medium risk is a BMI of 35.0–39.9. • Highest risk is a BMI of 40 or greater.


FAQ018, March 2016

Why is it important to wear a seat belt when I travel during pregnancy? Although the baby is protected inside your body, you should wear a lap and shoulder belt every time you travel while you are pregnant for the best protection—even in the final weeks of pregnancy. You and your baby are much more likely to survive a car crash if you are buckled in.


10.
June 2015

FAQ131, June 2015

What are some of the benefits of exercise for postpartum women? Exercise has the following benefits for postpartum women: It helps strengthen and tone abdominal muscles. It boosts energy. It may be useful in preventing postpartum depression. It promotes better sleep. It relieves stress.


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