• Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month

Join Count The Kicks to help more babies get here safely

  • KimberlyIsburg
  • 09.30.21

Count the Kicks is committed to helping expectant parents and their babies have a healthy birth day. During the month of October, which is National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month, we are asking you to help us raise awareness about the impact of stillbirth in our country.

Link Found: Stillbirth + Maternal Mortality

The United States is the only developed country with a consistently rising maternal mortality rate, according to the World Health Organization. CDC data shows that every year in the U.S. approximately 700 women will die from childbirth complications, and 23,500 babies will be stillborn. 

Stillbirth is defined as the loss of a pregnancy between 20 and 42 weeks gestation. It affects 1 in every 169 pregnancies nationally, and is 10 times more common than SIDS. For women who experience a stillbirth, maternal morbidity is almost five times more common than in women who have live births. 

The risk is even greater for Black women. According to the CDC, Black women are twice as likely to lose a baby to stillbirth than their White neighbor, colleague or friend. Black women are also three more likely to die of pregnancy complications. The COVID-19 pandemic is exacerbating what was already broken. Recent research has identified significant increases in stillbirth and maternal death since the pandemic began.

“It is more important than ever for expectant parents and providers to have regular conversations about fetal movement throughout the third trimester. The Count the Kicks app acts as an early warning system for expectant parents so they can let their providers know when something feels off,” said Emily Price, Executive Director for Healthy Birth Day, Inc.  

Make kick counting a common practice

We need to make sure kick counting is a common practice for all expectant parents in the third trimester of pregnancy. You can help us prevent preventable stillbirths and save families from experiencing the pain of loss by educating others about the Count the Kicks campaign. 

Expectant parents can get to know their baby’s normal movement pattern by having a daily kick counting session using the FREE Count the Kicks app starting at 28 weeks (or 26 weeks for a high-risk pregnancy). The app is available in 12 languages in the iOS and Google Play app stores. It is also available on Apple Watch. Expectant parents can also count using a paper chart.  

Research shows a change in a baby’s movement can be the earliest and sometimes only indication there might be an issue with a pregnancy. When the amount of time it takes to get to 10 movements changes, it can be a red flag to potential problems with mom or baby and is an indication for the expectant parent to call their provider right away. 

Kick counting data within the app can even be emailed or texted directly to providers. This is a helpful way to determine the next best steps for mom and baby when going in may increase the risk of exposure to COVID-19. 

Impact of Count the Kicks

Time and time again, this system works. So far this year we have heard from nine families who reached out to share how Count the Kicks helped their baby (or babies) have a healthy birth day. Since our campaign launched, we have received more than 80 baby save stories from families in 24 states and three countries.

Lottie O’Sullivan reached out late last year to tell us about the safe arrival of her daughter Clementine. Lottie was using the Count the Kicks app to track her daughter’s movement, and reached out to her provider right away when she noticed her daughter wasn’t moving like normal. 

“One thing the doctors and nurses kept telling us in the immediate aftermath was how fortunate we were to have gone in for monitoring when we did. The OB who performed my C-section said he didn’t think she would’ve made it another hour. It is not lost on me how close we came to a very different outcome. I am so thankful that we knew the importance of counting kicks and that Clementine is with us today,” Lottie said.

The Count the Kicks app is a powerful tool to help expectant parents be more in tune with their bodies and their babies. This October, we invite you to join us in raising awareness about this important issue by sharing Count the Kicks with every expectant parent and maternal healthcare provider you know. Together we can make sure more babies have a healthy birth day. 

Learn more about our vision to save 7,500 babies every year and improve birth outcomes everywhere.

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