Dr. Rishita and our team at Smile Wonders raises funds for March of Babies each year to help reduce the rate of premature deliveries and to support families caring for premature infants. This year, on Saturday, May 4th, 2019, Smile Wonders and families from all over the DC metro area are coming together to walk and raise awareness for these issues. Our team has committed to come together and raise $1000 towards the cause. Dr. Rishita pledges to match the $1,000. Please help Smile Wonders reach our goal!

Here are the 4 major ways that a premature delivery impacts a developing baby:

  1. Feeding: As natural as eating can be for us, it can be truly difficult for newborns, especially when they are delivered earlier than expected.

-A premature infant may be significantly smaller in size, meaning they will not have the same strength or stamina to nurse as a healthy full term baby.

-They may also have difficulty coordinating their suck, swallow, breathe reflex, which is what allows infants to manage their airway when nursing or bottle feeding.

-If a premature infant needs to spend time in the NICU to monitor various medical conditions, it can be even more challenging for the premature infant to adequately drain and stimulate the mother’s milk supply.

  1.   Breathing: When an infant is born early, their lungs may not be fully developed which   can complicate how well a premature baby can breathe.

-Underdeveloped lungs are not able to expand fully when taking in air. This can cause the infant to overwork and lose the energy needed to breathe. Oxygen may need to be supplemented through the use of CPAP or nose cannulas until the lungs fully develop.

  1.   Eyes: A baby’s eyes develop the most during final trimester of pregnancy, meaning if a baby is born early they are at higher risk for vision impairment.

-As the eyes continue to develop outside the womb, the retinas can develop abnormal blood vessels and damage visual acuity.

-If a premature baby is reliant on oxygen supplementation, the eyes can become damaged if too-high levels of oxygen are provided, resulting in decreased vision or even blindness.

  1.   Brain or Cognitive Development:

-Premature babies are at higher risk of brain bleeds during or after their delivery, especially if delivered under 4.5 lbs.

-If the baby has apneic episodes due to underdeveloped lungs, the brain is at high risk of being deprived without oxygen.

-Brain bleeds or lack of oxygen can significantly impact the developing brain, leading to developmental or learning delays.

Donate to the Smile Wonders March of Babies Team to help us reach our goal of $1,000! In doing so, Dr. Rishita promises to match the $1,000 donated. These funds help prevent these risks for developing premature babies and their families!

Click the link below to donate now: