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An Ounce of Prevention Starts Before Birth & Continues Right After

PHOTO: Dr. Adam Wolfberg will be speaking in Charleston this week. Photo courtesy of Dr. Wolfberg.
PHOTO: Dr. Adam Wolfberg will be speaking in Charleston this week. Photo courtesy of Dr. Wolfberg.
December 13, 2012

CHARLESTON, W.Va. - A summit in Charleston is stressing that the entire state will benefit from healthy pregnancies and births and saying that moms and babies do better when they get care and time together. Dr. Adam Wolfberg is a Boston obstetrician and expert in complex pregnancies. Wolfberg says everyone benefits from healthy, full-term pregnancies and from helping moms make good choices.

"Do not smoke while you're pregnant, go to the doctor while you're pregnant, be informed, breastfeed if possible, and try to make sure your pregnancy gets to within a week of your due date."

Tiny amounts of support early-on have huge benefits that can last the child's entire life, he says.

"This determines how kids do in school and how healthy they are as children - and even as adults. Few other contributions that we can make that cost so little contribute to the well-being of our community and our society."

Doctors are starting to realize that many natural processes are healthy for moms and babies, he says. For example, kids do better when pregnancies go the full term.

"Every week and every day counts. It's very important for women who are pregnant to do everything they can to stay pregnant for at least 39 weeks - that's one week before their due date."

Another example, he says, is moms holding their newborns, even while they get early care.

"Babies do better and moms do better if we never separate them, if babies are born and go right up on top of their moms. They need skin-to-skin contact from the very first moment of life, early breastfeeding, and bringing the care to them."

Wolfberg will be speaking at the 2012 Perinatal and Child Health Summit on Dec. 13 and 14 at the Charleston Marriott.

More information is available at www.wvperinatal.org.

Dan Heyman, Public News Service - WV