Young Military Moms: Why Deployment May Up Your Risk For Preterm Births

deployed seven to 10 months before giving birth. This suggests that, in many cases, conception occurred during deployment.
Pregnancy during deployment is considered a medical emergency that requires immediate evacuation from conflict areas, the researchers noted.

“The concerns raised by these findings are heightened in the context of prior research documenting high rates of unintended pregnancy in the military and emerging evidence that the most reliable forms of contraception (long-acting reversible contraceptives) are underutilized in the Army, especially around the time of deployment,” the study authors wrote.

“This study shows that the time around deployment is a period during which we should empower our soldiers to prevent unintended pregnancies,” Shaw said.

“It’s reassuring that deployment itself is not a risk factor for having a premature baby,” but female soldiers need to understand the risks of becoming pregnant around the time of deployment, Shaw said.

“We could tell them it’s a pretty stressful time, consider returning home and settling in for a few months before you add to your family,” he suggested.

The truth is, some women have to work up until they give birth to their offspring. Not everyone has the privilege to take off months in advance before they give birth. However, it is important for them to know their limitations. Obligations and certain thresholds may need to be met, however with proper planning and adequate timing, they can certainly decrease their risks of preterm births. Once you find out that you are pregnant, you must start your birthing plan immediately and take action.

Having a healthy mindset and plan of action will ultimately lead to healthier births in the end.

SOURCE: Stanford University, news release, March 1, 2018

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