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Infant Death Awareness Day

Updated on February 9, 2015

Remembering Our Children

The loss of a child is one of the most terrible things you can experience. To millions of people worldwide, this is a reality. October 15 has been chosen as a day to remember our children. To many parents it is a comfort to share their grief with others who know what it feels like.

Awareness ribbon postcard

Different reasons-same result

There are many reasons why a baby dies. Miscarriage, blighted ovum, stillbirth or SIDS, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome - just to mention some. To the parents it does not really matter what the cause of the death was, they are grieving their child. But what is being done to prevent these traumas? What is actually happening?

SIDS

Sudden Infant Death Syndrome

Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is the unexpected, sudden death of a child under age 1 in which an autopsy does not show an explainable cause of death. Most of the time it happens when the infant is sleeping. It is very scary because there is no known cause. There are a few theories, though, and parents are encouraged to take certain precautions.

- Put the baby to sleep on its back, not stomach.

- Avoid soft bedding in crib

- No smoking or use of drugs during pregnancy or around baby.

- Get proper prenatal care

Unfortunately, even parents who do everything in their power to protect their child experience this trauma.

There are different organizations working hard to inform and research to prevent SIDS. One of these is SIDS and Kids, which "works to find answers for parents by funding and supporting vital research into stillbirth, SIDS and safe sleeping practices. Through evidence based community education we aim to prevent these deaths and we advocate for and support bereaved families."

Poster of sleeping baby

Miscarriage

A miscarriage is the death of the fetus before week 20 of pregnancy. It is also referred to as spontanous abortion. Many women don't like this term, it is too related to purposeful ending of a pregnancy. Most miscarriages take place in the first trimester of pregnancy. While there can be health-related and other reasons, most of the time it is not known why a miscarriage occurs. it is thought that early miscarriages are due to a chromosomal problem in the fetus, thus ending the pregnancy. Despite being only a few weeks' old, it is still the child of somebody who grieves the death. People react very differently to a miscarriage. Many women continue having healthy babies after a miscarriage, although the risk does increase each time it happens.

Read more about miscarriage here: emedicinehealth,

NCBI

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Ectopic pregnancy

Ectopic means "out of place." In an ectopic pregnancy, a fertilized egg has implanted outside the uterus, most of the time in the fallopian tubes. Since there is not enough place for the fetus to grow, it will eventually burst the surrounding organs, causing great loss of blood. It is therefore very important to diagnose it at an early stage. A classic ectopic pregnancy does not result in a live birth.

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Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day

On October 15, millions of parents and others will be remembering their children, all over the world. The day is observed with remembrance ceremonies and candle-lighting vigils, concluding with the International Wave of Light, a worldwide lighting of candles at 7:00 p.m. The candles will be left to burn for an hour, in honor and remembrance of children who died during pregnancy or shortly after birth. The day is mostly recognized in the US and Canada, but is spreading to other countries. In the UK, the wave of light will be observed, as well as other events in the week leading up to October 15th.

MISS Foundation - Infant Awareness Day October 15

People like remembering in different ways

Sharing Is Healing

It is very important to deal with the grief you feel when your baby dies, whatever the cause. There are many good forums on the net where you can share your feelings, and see that you are not alone. Talking about your experience helps many parents. Here you will find my own story as well as links to some really helpful sites.

Do you think this is a good way to deal with the grief? - Please share your thoughts

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    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      FB liked.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Experiencing miscarriage or loss of an infant takes a piece of your heart that holds their memory, this is beautiful and meaningful healing step for us. The poetry tugged out some more healing tears and its been many years since I experience miscarriage...thank you....

    • LouisaDembul profile image
      Author

      LouisaDembul 5 years ago

      It is true that you never forget. I have lost several, for different reasons. Of course, having been able to finish two pregnancies, resulting in two lovely children, has helped me cope a lot. Sharing it has also contributed to the healing process. Today I am fine, even if I'll never forget.

    • GramaBarb profile image

      GramaBarb 5 years ago from Vancouver

      Miscarriage of my baby is never forgotten. It was 50 years ago. A very touching lens.

    • profile image

      JoshK47 5 years ago

      A very touching lens - and yes, I definitely think it is. There's nothing better than sharing to get the healing started.

    • jdwheeler profile image

      jdwheeler 6 years ago

      Absolutely. Get it out and let the healing begin. And if it's possible, let it encourage you to try again. If it's in the Lord's will, it will happen.

    • mariaamoroso profile image

      irenemaria 6 years ago from Sweden

      I really like that expression: sharing is healing