A Comparison of White versus African American Prenatal Care
Ideally, a pregnancy is planned, and the appropriate pre-conception steps are taken to ensure a healthy pregnancy. But we all know that that is not always the case. So, we begin by asking ourselves, what is prenatal care? Standard prenatal care in an assumed, normal pregnancy basicly means seeing a health care provider once a month for the first 28 weeks; then every two to three weeks until 36 weeks; and then weekly until delivery, according to the guidelines of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. (Women's Health, 2005).
Soon after a positive pregnancy test, pregnant women should receive a physical, report their medical history and get routine prenatal tests, including blood tests, urinalysis, and more. The obstetrician or health care provider will then recommend avoiding alcohol, smoking and recreational drugs, he or she will also discuss the appropriate and healthy weight gain during pregnancy, eating well-balanced meals, exercise, and taking prenatal vitamins.
During pregnancy, women need a higher caloric intake, basically they should eat an extra 300 calories per day, but that doesn't mean doubling your food intake; the expectant mother should make sure she gets proper nutrition, including fruits and vegetables, whole grains, dairy products and protein. Much research has found that with White versus African American women, many African American women do not pursue proper prenatal care, but they should, as it is the first step to a healthy mom and baby. (Ebony, 2006)
"Of the annual 8 million infant deaths worldwide, 5 million occur in the neonatal period and most of these occur in the developing countries. Close to two-thirds of these neonatal deaths occur in the early neonatal period. Perinatal mortality, comprising of still births and early neonatal deaths is one of the sensitive indices of the quality of prenatal, obstetric and... [continues]
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