New Definition of Term Pregnancy

New Definition of Term Pregnancy

When is your baby “full term”? This is what is addressed in this recent TIME article.

Once upon a time in most cases your baby was born when it was good and ready. But more and more births are being medically induced for non-medical reasons such as a “big baby”, guaranteeing that you deliver with your Doctor and just plain convenience. It was thought that babies born any where between 37-41 weeks would have the same healthy outcomes, but research has shown that those last few weeks really do make a difference. The new guidelines are as follows:

Early Term: Between 37 weeks 0 days and 38 weeks 6 days
Full Term: Between 39 weeks 0 days and 40 weeks 6 days
Late Term: Between 41 weeks 0 days and 41 weeks 6 days
Postterm: Between 42 weeks 0 days and beyond

These guidelines were recently redefined by ACOG and are certainly a step in the right direction. There are, of course, times when medical induction is best for baby. But I tell my students to send up the red flag when Doctors start talking about “how big the baby is” especially before 40 weeks.

Delayed Cord Clamping

Delayed Cord Clamping

I just finished working on a report on the British Medical Journal‘s paper regarding the benefits of delayed cord clamping. Since I exclusively breastfed my son for the first six months of his life, I often heard conflicting advice about giving him an additional iron supplement (I didn’t). But if we had delayed cutting his cord, I wouldn’t have had to even think about it! Amazing! The BMJ report is a bit technical, but this NYT article gives a brief overview. Did you delay cutting your baby’s cord? Would you in the future?