October 15 is International Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day. This day is set aside to acknowledge the pain of those parents who lose a child through miscarriage, stillbirth, or infant death. This year there is a new aspect to the special day. According to an October 14 press release, Count the Kicks.org wants to spread the news that measuring fetal movements in the last trimester can save babies’ lives. The Count the Kicks Facebook page also explains their mission.
This movement began in Des Moines, Iowa, in 2009 and is spreading nationwide in hopes of lowering stillbirth rates in the United States. Currently 1 in 160 births end in stillbirth in this country. This group is sharing the documented results from Norway where stillbirths were reduced by one third when these simple methods of monitoring the movements of an unborn baby were employed.
Here are the exact directions for correctly monitoring your baby's movement. It is simple to do: basically you see how long it takes you to feel 10 kicks and record the information each day at the same time. A change in activity by the unborn baby may indicate a problem.
You can view the group's video message that they are promoting on this special day to the left of this article. The women you will meet in this video are the Count the Kicks ambassadors, all of whom have experienced the loss of a baby by stillbirth: Shawn Soumilas of Arizona, Kari Davis of Ohio, Meghan Petty of Tennessee, Karina Bennett of New York/California, Stacey Gripshover of Kentucky, Sapphire Garcia-Glancy of Kansas, and Sarah Firianni of Florida. Sarah Firianni actually used the counting kicks method to determine her baby was in peril from a knot in the cord. The technique saved her child's life.
So, this year's commemoration of those babies lost through miscarriage, stillbirth and infant death will include some new and promising information that brings hope for the future.
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