statistics

What do they really mean? Can we make them say what we want? Can the numbers be manipulated? Of course- but over the last few days of documenting the cesarean stats, the infant mortality and maternal morbidity rates makes me realize that we don’t care about most of those numbers as a society until they effect us personally.

When my youngest daughter was diagnosed with epilepsy as a young child, I was appalled at how little was known about the disorder. But before she was diagnosed I had never once been concerned about it.

When my dad was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, I was amazed at how little was known about medications that would be beneficial to controlling the disease. I had no knowledge really of the disease until I was personally effected.

Although I had made a point of knowing a lot about breast cancer and genetic components of the disease due to my family history, I learned so much more when I was diagnosed with the genetic mutation of BRCA1. And although I researched to a huge degree the information regarding reconstruction of my breasts after my mastectomy was decided upon, I had no idea of the complications that arise only 5% of the time! And now I know a ton more about that!

So, I share the stats to make you aware. This does effect you. It effects us all when births and outcomes from those births are taking away from birth experiences and lives. Our postpartum depression rates are climbing and some say it is the dissatisfaction with births that causes this for some women. Women who have great birth experiences according to Klaus and Kennels studies as documented showed that women had *Improved Breastfeeding, *Decreased Postpartum Depression,
*Greater Maternal Satisfaction and *Better Mother-Infant Interaction.

So if moms feel better about their babies- better about themselves- and bond more appropriately with their infants- that helps everyone! In a presentation I attended by Drs Klaus and Kennel they said that moms who had a good birth experience felt their babies were smarter, cuter and more advanced than their counterparts. So if those moms were treating their babies that way, who does that help? Everyone! You are personally being effected by birth outcomes- whether you realize it or not!