Million of newborns across India need your caring touch.
Birth of every baby is a wonderful happening. It is the event of a life entering the external world from the uterine environment.
The initial 4 weeks after child’s birth is called the neonatal period. It is the time for extensive care as it involves high complexity. In this transition period rapid changes happen and many critical events occur in and around the baby.
It is the beginning of physiological and anatomical development for newborns as they have to adapt changes and accept their new environment. It is the time in which feeding patterns are formed and family bonding for the child begins.
Neonatal period being the most critical period of a child’s survival, death of the infant in first 28 days from the day of birth (0-27) is called neonatal mortality.
As per reports, child survival possibilities are increasing year on year and infant death rates are reducing worldwide. Data show that in India infant death rates have reduced down from 8.67 lakh in 2016 to 8.02 lakh in 2017.
Reasons behind neonatal mortality:
- Birth defects: Birth defects cause infant deaths. These defects are either structural or functional. For example, asphyxia is a condition of lack of oxygen to the body that arises from abnormal breathing and it is said to cause 20% of neonatal deaths. Few of these birth defects are treatable and can be cured with timely attention while others may be hereditary or have a long term impact.
- Infection: 33% of deaths occur due to infections. Water sanitation, hygienic environment, proper and periodical immunization post childbirth prevent disease and common infections like diarrhea, malaria and measles. Breastfeeding at early stages do help in reducing neonatal mortality rate by building up the immune system.
- Preterm birth and low weight: Premature birth causes 35% of the deaths. With a healthy monitored pregnancy period and proper nutritional food one can avoid preterm birth and low weight caused by malnutrition.
- Pregnancy complications: Newborn deaths due to pregnancy complications like umbilical cord prolapse or prolonged labor can be controlled by providing timely access to emergency obstetric care and treatment support. It is also important that the delivery of a child is handled by trained people through a hygienic process.
Improving the care quality during the time of delivery and after birth is an overall effective way to reduce infant mortality rate.