Dr. Jennifer Arnold, neonatologist and star of the hit TV show The Little Couple explains why babies are born prematurely.
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Why Preterm Labor Occurs Dr. Travis Stork: Our first email comes from Rhonda in Columbus, Georgia who writes, “I’m pregnant with my first child and want to make sure I carry the term. Why are babies born prematurely and what can I do to prevent a premature birth?” Dr. Jennifer Arnold: Well, it’s important to know that although no one wants to have a preterm baby. There can be a variety of reasons that that can occur. It could be maternal reasons, things such as high blood pressure and you know that’s the least you can share more about that, things such as you know other maternal health issues. Then there can be reasons with the babies as well. So, for example if you have multiples, those babies are more likely to be born premature just because of the size is used of having more than one baby. Dr. Lisa Masterson: Early prenatal care is key because we’re looking for infections, vaginal or bladder infections that’s why we have the mommies you know pee in the cup everytime they come and just make sure of the well being that it’s progressing well. It's the best thing you can do. Dr. Jim Sears: You can basically detect preterm labor before it’s really starting sometimes and maybe stopping. Dr. Lisa Masterson: Exactly, it’s they’re having vigilant prenatal care, exactly so you know there’s things like cervical incompetence and things like that that can sometimes be difficult to detect but and also women leading that healthy lifestyles not smoking, staying really well hydrated, those things are very helpful in preventing prematurity.