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Entries in mom (5)

Tuesday
May082012

Best Place to Be a Mom: Where Does the US Rank?

Brand X Pictures/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Just in time for Mother’s Day, Save the Children has released its 13th annual State of World’s Mothers report. The report, which ranks countries from best to worst in places to be a mother, saw the United States placing 25th, moving up from last year’s ranking of 31.

Carolyn Miles, president and CEO of Save the Children, said there’s still much work to be done. “We still fall below most wealthy nations,” she said on the Save the Children website. “A woman in the U.S. is more than seven times as likely to die of a pregnancy-related cause in her lifetime than a woman in Italy or Ireland. When it comes to the number of children enrolled in preschools or the political status of women, the United States also places in the bottom 10 countries of the developed world.”

Norway came in No. 1 on the list, which, according to the Save the Children, weighs such factors as a mother’s health, education and economic status, as well as such critical child wellness indicators such as health and nutrition.  Niger came in last, largely because of the food crisis facing the nation. It replaced Afghanistan, which held the bottom spot for the past two years.

Save the Children found that encouraging mothers to breastfeed could save 1 million children’s lives a year. The report also found that less than 40 percent of all infants in developing countries received the full benefits of exclusive breastfeeding.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
May132011

Mom Who Gave Daughter Botox Investigated By California Authorities

ABC News(SAN FRANCISCO) -- The California mom who admitted to injecting her eight-year-old daughter with botox for a kiddie beauty pageant is now being investigated by the San Francisco Human Services Agency.

"It's pretty unusual for a mom to be injecting an eight-year-old with botox and certainly is grounds for an investigation," said Trent Rohrer of the San Francisco Human Services Agency.

Mom Kerry and daughter Britney, appeared on ABC’s Good Morning America Thursday defending the eight-year-old pageant contestant's use of botox.

"I just, like, don't, like, think wrinkles are nice on little girls," Britney said. Britney admitted it hurt to get the injections on her face, but said she was used to the pain.

The admission sparked an uproar online, in the medical community and by child advocates. Kerry told ABC News that she does not believe she's endangering Britney's health and that her daughter asked for the injections. Kerry, who asked that her family's last name not be used, is a part-time aesthetician and no stranger to Botox herself, having done the treatment on her own face.

Kerry wouldn't reveal who provides her with the Botox. Kerry typically administers the Botox to Britney through a total of five shots, in three different locations on her face.

ABC News' chief health and medical editor, Dr. Richard Besser, said that the Food and Drug Administration has not approved the use of botox on children for cosmetic purposes.

"As a doctor, if I'd seen this mother, I would be required to report her to protective services because it's maltreatment... Any doctor who would give a parent botox to administer to their children should lose their license…there's not a state where you don't need to be a licensed doctor or under direct supervision of a doctor to inject this," Besser said.

Besser said that botox is used to correct children who are cross-eyed or suffering from some neurological disorders, but not typically for cosmetic reasons.

The launching of an investigation into Kerry does not mean that she will lose custody of her child, experts say. She could be redirected to parenting classes or nothing could happen at all if the botox was being administered lawfully, experts say.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
May062011

Where's the Best Place to Be a Mom?

BananaStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Millions of Americans will celebrate Mother's Day this weekend, and Save the Children has come out with its list of the best places to be a mom.

The United States finished 31st of the 43 developed countries appearing in the rankings of 164 nations.

Save the Children created its list by studying health, education and economic factors for women.

Here's a look at the 10 best and worst places to be a mother:

Best
1. Norway
2. (tie) Australia
2. (tie) Iceland
4. Sweden
5. Denmark
6. New Zealand
7. Finland
8. Belgium
9. Netherlands
10. France

Worst
1. Afghanistan
2. Niger
3. Guinea-Bissau
4. Yemen
5. Chad
6. DR Congo
7. Eritrea
8. Mali
9. Sudan
10. Central African Republic

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Apr052011

US Teen Birth Rate Fell to Record Low in 2009

E. Dygas/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Fewer teens are having babies in the United States -- but not few enough, according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Although teen births dropped 37 percent nationwide over the last two decades to an all-time low in 2009, the rate is still nine times higher than in other developed countries.

Despite the plunge, roughly 410,000 teen girls gave birth in 2009 at an estimated cost of $9 billion to U.S. taxpayers, according to the report.

"Many are enrolled in the Medicaid and WIC [Women, Infants and Children] programs to help them during pregnancy,” said Dr. Amy Thompson, an assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology specializing in teen pregnancy at the University of Cincinnati.

Only half of teen moms earn a high school diploma by age 22 compared with 90 percent of teens who don't have children, according to the report.

Black and Hispanic teens are two-to-three times more likely to give birth than white teens, according to the report. And girls born to teen parents are nearly 33 percent more likely to become teen moms themselves.

The report suggests fewer high school students are having sex, and more of them are using at least one method of birth control. The proportion of students who reported using two methods of contraception, such as condoms and the birth control pill, almost doubled from five percent in 1991 to nine percent in 2009.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Mar032011

Surrogate Mom Damages Heart After Four Babies

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(Waterbury, Conn.) -- Karma Daigle of Waterbury, Conn., loved being pregnant with her son Gabriel, who is now 9, but after her divorce in 2004, she longed to have another child and knew that without a husband, it might not ever happen.

So she turned to gestational surrogacy, giving birth to four more children -- first Zoe in 2006, then her twin siblings Sebastian and Lukas in 2008 for a American couple living in Romania, and then Lucas Tomas in 2010 for a Chicago family.

Both couples were gay men who used their own sperm and donor eggs for in vitro fertilization (IVF).

They paid her $19,000 to $25,000 a pregnancy, and she signed legal papers giving away all rights to the children and holding the couples harmless for any potential medical problems, including her possible death.

But being a surrogate mother can be risky. Daigle developed preeclampsia in the final pregnancy that has left her with heart damage.

Though she might never be able to safely have another pregnancy and give her biological son Gabriel the siblings he longs for, Daigle said she would do it all again.

Daigle, now 32 and married for a second time, appreciated the money, buying a house and paying for her wedding -- but most of all she wanted to help others who couldn't carry their own child.

Emotionally, parting with her babies was not a problem, according to Daigle.

"Everybody goes through the baby blues and for every pregnancy that lasted three days. It was hard on my body but it didn't traumatize me. I knew what I was getting in to."

Surrogate mothers have been used since the 1970s, but the first highly publicized case -- "Baby M" -- was in 1976.

Mary Beth Whitehead gave birth to a girl she had agreed to carry for an infertile couple. But as the biological mother, she changed her mind. She sued for custody, but was denied.

The American Society for Reproductive Medicine estimates that there were 400 to 600 surrogate births annually from 2003 to 2007, the last year for which data is available.

Support groups and agencies say the total number since 1976 may exceed 30,000.

The Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology (SART) is the only organization that makes an effort to track surrogate births, but at least 15 percent of the clinics across the United States don't report their numbers, according to a 2008 investigation by Newsweek magazine. And private arrangements, most notably in the gay community, are on the rise.

Surrogacy is banned in much of Europe and in 12 states, including New York, New Jersey, and Michigan, which refuse to recognize surrogacy contracts. Texas, Illinois, Utah, and Florida have recently passed laws to legalize the practice, but in many states laws are still vague.

Surrogacy experts say women need to be educated about entering into surrogacy before completing their families. Multiple pregnancies -- especially twins, which are more common in IVF -- can be risky. 

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio