Cerebral palsy occurs when the brain doesn’t develop properly, resulting in a loss of muscle control. This often occurs during pregnancy and even during a child’s early years.
Some common ways cerebral palsy can develop include:
- While a mother is pregnant, she gets an infection which harms the baby
- The blood supply to the baby’s brain while in the womb is limited
- A mother is constantly intoxicated by alcohol or drugs during pregnancy
- Difficulties during childbirth results in a lack of oxygen to the baby’s brain
- An infant gets an infection which leads to inflammation in or close to the brain
- A child suffers a brain injury due to an accident or fall
Whether you are planning to be a parent or currently pregnant, there are many precautions you can take to prevent your child from suffering cerebral palsy. In essence, a healthy pregnancy will drastically reduce the chances of this health condition.
If You Are Interested in Getting Pregnant
Avoid drinking excessively, smoking, and using drugs. Ensure that any health conditions are being treated since they can affect pregnancy. Prior to getting pregnant, schedule a doctor’s visit to get shots—including a flu shot—protecting against rubella and other diseases. If you are constantly under stress or if you live or work near toxic chemicals, speak with a health professional immediately.
If You Are Pregnant
Regularly visit the doctor for prenatal care. Not only can this help prevent cerebral palsy, but this can also protect you against other birth complications, such as premature birth or low birth rate. Wash your hands constantly to avoid infections. If you fall ill or feel sick, visit the doctor’s office immediately.
When Your Baby is Born
Your newborn child should be checked for jaundice (i.e. yellowish eyes and skin) prior to leaving the hospital. Failure to do so may contribute to cerebral palsy. Additionally, make sure your baby gets shots which protect him/her against encephalitis and meningitis, which can lead to cerebral palsy.
If your infant suffers a head injury, it can possibly prevent his/her brain from developing properly. To protect your child against head injuries, safeguard your home by installing safety gates at the tops and bottoms of staircases and window guards. If your child is old enough to sleep in a bed, install safety rails. Whenever your child rides a bike, make sure he/she wears a helmet. Choose a playground with a sand, wood mulch, or any other shock absorbing surface.
If your child has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy due to medical malpractice in Missouri, contact our Kansas City personal injury attorney at Bertram & Graf, L.L.C. and schedule a free consultation today.