🌌Hola peeps how are you all? I’ve been busy with my baby Tas 1st bday preps and celebrations(full blog post will be up soon😊) Today’s blog post is abt Cleft in babies, before 3 years I’ve not known wat Cleft was until someone in my family got diagnosed of it, Are u aware wat cleft is? Cleft are openings or splits in the upper lip, the roof of the mouth (palate) or both. Cleft lip and cleft palate result when facial structures that are developing in an unborn baby don’t close completely.
Cleft lip and cleft palate are among the most common birth defects. They most commonly occur as isolated birth defects but are also associated with many inherited genetic conditions or syndromes.
Firstly we thought tat this will b cured naturally as the baby grows the tissues will form n things will b fine💮 but after doing a lot of research we got to kno tat it occurs one in 700 babies annually, and is the fourth most common birth defect in the U.S and More than 1 million cases per year in India n needs a medical attention and requires a medical diagnosis.
We felt like why this happened to our baby wat was the cause of it, went to several doctors n got consulted n finally concluded
📌these are due to a combination of genetic and environmental factors.
📌Another cause may be related to a medication a mother may have taken during her pregnancy. Some drugs may cause cleft lip and cleft palate. Among them: anti-seizure/anticonvulsant drugs, acne drugs containing Accutane, and methotrexate, a drug commonly used for treating cancer, arthritis, and psoriasis.
📌And also due to d consumption of tobacco and Alcohol.
Its DIAGNOSIS is done through a Prenatal ULTRASOUND in an unborn child. If the clefting has not been detected in an ultrasound prior to the baby’s birth, a physical exam of the mouth, nose, and palate confirms the presence of cleft lip or cleft palate after a child’s birth.
The child in our family had to undergo many problems due to clefting like,
EATING problems as food and liquids can pass from the mouth back through the nose, EAR👂 infections as they are more prone to fluid build-up in the middle ear. If left untreated, ear infections can cause hearing loss, SPEECH👄 problems as the voices don’t carry well, the voice may take on a nasal sound, and the speech may be difficult to understand, DENTAL Problems as number of cavities and often have missing, extra, malformed, or displaced teeth🕊.
Having a baby born with a cleft can be upsetting, but cleft lip and cleft palate can be corrected. In most babies, a series of surgeries can restore normal function and achieve a more normal appearance with minimal scarring.
A cleft lip may require one or two surgeries depending on the extent of the repair needed. Surgery to repair a cleft lip usually occurs in the first few months of life and is recommended within the first 12 months of life. Surgery to repair a cleft palate is recommended within the first 18 months of life or earlier if possible.Repair of a cleft palate often requires multiple surgeries over the course of 18 years. The initial surgery creates a functional palate, reduces the chances that fluid will develop in the middle ears, and aids in the proper development of the teeth and facial bones.
Many children will need additional surgical procedures as they get older. Surgical repair can improve the look and appearance of a child’s face and might also improve breathing, hearing, and speech and language development. Children born with orofacial clefts might need other types of treatments and services, such as special dental or orthodontic care or speech therapy.
After all tat research work on cleft, There are certain things to be taken care of during pregnancy.No wonder why our grannies say to take proper care of us during pregnancy.
📍Cleft occurs in pregnant women who smoke cigarettes, drink alcohol or take certain medications.
📍Having diabetes.There is some evidence that women diagnosed with diabetes before pregnancy may have an increased risk of having a baby with a cleft lip.
📍Being obese during pregnancy. There is some evidence that babies born to obese women may have increased risk of cleft lip and palate.
FOLIC ACID Supplements:
I remember d time Wen I was pregnant how my mums(Mom n MIL) put a lot of emphasis on folic acid supplements, i hated taking medicines during pregnancy but they wre so keen tat tey used to enquire my husband did i take tat particular tablet or not.. YES, FOLIC ACID IS THAT IMPORTANT!! During d initial stages of pregnancy it’s important to note that all the birth defects happen during the first 28 days of the pregnancy, which is crucial, because this is the time when the woman mostly does not even know that she’s pregnant! This is the reason why most women who are of child-bearing age should make sure to consume enough folic acid, especially if a pregnancy is being planned.
Folic acid works to form healthy red blood cells, which are imperative for good health. A lack of folic acid in the body can lead to Folate-deficiency n causes birth defects in the baby. Folic acid reduces the risk of anemia, spine disorders, pre-mature growth ,poor growth in womb n even cleft palate. Proper intake of folic acid supplement provides a healthy body to d mother n her baby in the womb.
PREVENTION For the second baby:
After a baby is born with a cleft, parents are understandably concerned about the possibility of having another child with the same condition. While many cases of cleft lip and cleft palate can’t be prevented but can lower your risk:
📝Consider genetic counseling.
📝Take prenatal vitamins like Folic acid, which is actually really important during pregnancy.
📝Don’t use tobacco or alcohol. Use of alcohol or tobacco during pregnancy increases the risk of having a baby with a birth defect.
📝Avoid Smoking―Women who smoke during pregnancy are more likely to have a baby with an orofacial cleft than women who do not smoke.
Understanding the factors that are more common among babies with a birth defect will help us learn more about the causes n one such work of http://anamayaindopacific.org/ and their FB page – https://www.facebook.com/Anamayaindopacific/ is so commendable whose vision is to create a CLEFT FREE INDIA.