IN THE U.S. EACH YEAR 1 IN 10 BABIES IS BORN PRETERM:
Help us support moms and babies and raise awareness of the prematurity health crisis.
Every year BRIDGES raises awareness of the infant health crisis of preterm birth throughout the month of November.
Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. remains among the most dangerous developed nations for childbirth—a crisis fueled by the health equity gap in our health care system that puts women and babies of color at the greatest risk.
PREMATURE BABIES FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
In the United States, about 12 percent of babies are born prematurely. Having a baby is supposed to be a joyous occasion, but a premature birth can change all of that. At a time when you are supposed to be enjoying your healthy bundle of joy, you may be filled with worry and fear about your underweight, premature infant. Learning about premature babies and what to expect after your baby is born can help ease some of that worry.
Three types of premature birth:
- Late Preterm: born between 34-37 weeks of pregnancy
- Very Preterm: born at less than 32 weeks of pregnancy
- Extremely Preterm: born at less than 28 weeks of pregnancy
Why are babies born premature?
There is not a specific cause for premature birth. However, there are risk factors that increase your chance of having a premature birth.
- Pregnancy with more than one baby, like twins or triplets
- Previous premature birth
- Smoking cigarettes
- Drinking alcohol
- Use of illicit drugs
- Uterus, cervix, or placenta problems
- Mothers with chronic health problems, including high blood pressure and diabetes
- Some infections that occur during pregnancy
What short term health risks do premature babies face?
- Breathing Problems
- Heart Problems
- Underdeveloped Immune System
What long term health risks can premature babies potentially face?
- Learning Problems
- Cerebral Palsy
- Hearing and Vision Problems
- Respiratory Problems