DHEC partnering with Count the Kicks to bring awareness to pregnancy loss
COLUMBIA, SC (WOLO)– The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control is teaming up with Count the Kicks, a stillbirth prevention campaign, to bring awareness during National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month which is October. Stillbirth is defined as the loss of pregnancy between weeks 20 and 42. DHEC says stillbirth affects one in 167 babies nationally, and South Carolina sees an estimated 445 stillborn babies each year.
Count the Kicks teaches expectant parents to track how long it takes to feel ten kicks starting at 28 weeks of pregnancy and to monitor this time for changes. Experts say if this time changes, it could be a sign of potential problems with the mom or baby.
“Research shows that fetal movement is a good indicator of fetal health. We want mothers to be able to recognize normal fetal movement so they will then be able to recognize unusual patterns,” said Kimberly Seals, DHEC’s Director of the Bureau of Maternal and Child Health. “Counting baby’s kicks is an easy and free way for a mother to get in tune with her baby’s patterns and know when to notify the doctor if something changes.”
Count the Kicks also has a mobile app to help expecting parents keep track of their baby’s kicks.
Count the Kicks, an initiative created by the non-profit Healthy Birth Day, Inc., began in Iowa and reduced the state’s stillbirth rate by nearly 32% in the first ten years of the campaign.
For more information about Count the Kicks, visit countthekicks.org.