One Way to Prevent Abortion

Abortion is the termination of pregnancy or fetus in the womb before it can survive outside the body. An abortion can be said to be induced when a miscarriage occurs or deliberate when the individual chooses to terminate the pregnancy.

Why is this done
Usually, abortion is carried out because an individual or a couple is not willing to have a baby that is already conceived. Sometimes an abortion is carried out due to health implications to the mother or fetus. Then miscarriages happen and a baby is aborted before it reaches full term for delivery.

There are arguments for and against the morality of doing an abortion. Whichever side of the divide you belong to I believe the most important thing is to deal with the reason why anyone would want to do an abortion. My own point of view though on the matter is that abortion infringes on the rights of an unborn life. Going for the option of an abortion is a big choice and is not a simple matter. There are risks involved in doing one and a woman should not take this step without proper counseling and be informed about choices available.

Who & Who would Get an Abortion
1) I see young school girls endanger themselves every now and then attempting to abort a baby. Many of them try to get rid of a pregnancy that “just happens” while been sexually active irresponsibly. Often we hear of girls who try to get an abortion using all kinds of dangerous stuff that sometimes becomes fatal as the girl dies doing this or her womb is damaged leading to serious complications later in life when ready to have a baby.
2) Another group is couples/married people who are not ready to have a baby and pregnancy occurs anyway. So they opt for aborting the baby.
3) This group is what we call sex workers who by the nature of what they do are engaged regularly or on daily basis in an activity that can bring “babies from heaven”. When pregnancy occurs with these ladies they try to get rid of it because hey it is bad for business. Sometimes they do have the babies but imagine how many other pregnancies have been aborted.
4) This group, I will call the “encouragers” or the ones who point women and girls in the direction. The Boys and Men who are not ready to be fathers and flippantly tell their girlfriend or lover to get an abortion. Sounds easy, “is it not just to flush the thing out; I mean it is not yet a life”, says such men.

Circle Bead – A modern family planning method(femininematerz photo)

The Way Out – Know more About Family Planning Options/ Contraceptives
I will try to look at the different categories above
Schoolgirls/Teenagers: I am a strong advocate for abstinence but what can we do sometimes when young people want to experiment or are already sexually active? As a parent, I will do my best to support and help my children to wait and not rush into gratifying their sexual God-given appetite, for indeed it can be controlled and waiting is worth it. It worked for me their mother and some others that I have seen.

However, I have met a number of young people who are already sexually active and the question of introducing the use of contraceptives sounds like a good idea. My church mind sends a red alert every time I hear people talking about educating young people about their options when it comes to choice of a contraceptive (condoms, pills etc.). But over time I have learned that sometimes this is the best option for a young person who is sexually active.

An experience that I do regret was a teenage girl’s case I intervened in while working on a maternal and child project (Abiye-saving a mother/Infant). I will call her Mary. She had to stop going to school because she got pregnant and had a baby. My team and I helped to get a home for her baby while we linked her with someone willing to sponsor her education and who also took her in giving Mary a home and family.

One of the intervention piece of advice we got was to take her to a family planning clinic and help her get a contraceptive method done since she was sexually active. Guess what? We felt it will mean that we were encouraging her to be promiscuous, so we didn’t do anything about it. We would later regret it because soon Mary became even engaged in sexual activities as she was now free of taking care of her baby. Mary left that family and stopped going to school and as we followed up on her case, she aborted a number of pregnancies after that and almost lost her life at some point. Still, Mary won’t stop and now she has two more babies and is inaccessible to us.

So if a girl is sexually active get her to obtain a family planning method to prevent unplanned pregnancy while also working on helping her to make the choice of delaying gratification. And this is not just for girls teach your boy to be responsible. Let him know that If he wants to engage in sex he must know that means he can impregnate a girl so abstinence or use of a condom is advised.

Couples/Married
If you are not ready to have a baby; go get a contraceptive or family planning method done instead of aborting that baby. This allows couples to pursue their goals and careers; the woman is able to rest in between births and they can both have the number of children they can provide for. Visit a family planning clinic or see your doctor to get proper counseling on your choice.

Let’s reduce the number of abortions by opting for contraceptives.Create a world where every pregnancy is wanted.

Adebisi Adetunji(C)

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No Woman Should Die Giving Birth to Another Life: Preventive Measures

BBC photo

 

It is really disturbing hearing that another woman or any woman just lost her life after delivering her baby.

In the compound where we live the cries of an elderly woman who lost a dear young woman filters through our window. We rushed out and knocked on her door. She managed to unlock her door and with our concerned and worried faces we stepped in asking her like ten questions all at once. That was when we found out a lady dear to her, someone she had worked with at her office before retirement had just died. They lost her after the birth of her third child… It was a very painful news for me.

I am not sure of the details of the complications that could have arisen during or after delivery of her baby but I just simply know that… THIS Shouldn’t BE!Complications that can lead to maternal and child death include:

  • Bleeding/hearmorrahage, pregnancy induced high blood pressure. 
  • Lack of going for antenatal
  • Engaging services of untrained midwives or health care providers;
  • Refusal to follow the doctor’s advice
  • Sometimes it is the careless mistakes of health personnel or anyone taking the delivery of the baby and more.
  • Having too many births in quick successions.
  • Prolonged labor due to narrow birth canal and a baby with a big weight or a breached baby.

A lot more needs to be done to prevent these needless deaths of mothers and their babies. Those to ensure this:

  • The pregnant woman herself – Eat right, take your immunizations, go for regular check up at your antenatal clinic, carry out all necessary and routine checks.
  • Husband/spouse – Be involved and ensure that your wife goes for all her antenatal visits; encourage her to eat and rest well ; watch out for any emergency signs and don’t delay in getting medical intervention.
  • Families should not insist on old traditional harmful delivery practises.

Other preventive means for maternal deaths or birth complications:

  1. Stop female circumcision/FGMC – This causes scaring in the vagina of such a woman or girl therefore narrowing the birth canal. No wonder then that such a woman experiences prolonged labor and tear that could lead to VVF if the case is not managed properly.
  2. Stop the use of traditional birth attendants and engage trained health personnel.
  3. Adopt a modern family planning method to allow mothers to rest in between births. It also enables a family to have only the number of children they can cater for. Family Planning also prevents a woman who has been otherwise advised by her doctor to stop having children on health/wellbeing grounds.
  4. After delivery ensure the woman goes for her postnatal visit to the hospital. There she gets medical check up.
  5. Rest.. Rest and rest after delivery. Don’t rush into doing your normal work routine doing so much than your body can handle.
  6. Naming ceremony can wait if the mother and child are still receiving medical care after delivery.

And seriously a Ceaserian Section is not a taboo or evil! It is a perfectly safe way to ensure that a mother and baby go through the delivery process safely.

No woman should die giving birth to another life.

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

Reaching People at Home & Work Places with Information about FP

Engaging our community and dialoguing with members at the grassroot level about Family Planning is key to poverty eradication and family empowerment.

Once while working with ARDA & NURHI on the field going from house to house, business centers dialoguing and informing people better about the need to plan their families we met a group of men. It was interesting discussing the issue with these men, some agreed that couples should only give birth to the number of children they can cater for but one man’s opinion stood out. This man whom I will call Bode believed that a man has a right to keep giving birth to as many children as he desired. Then we raised the issue if how frequent and too many births can affect a woman’s health. The discussion then centered on the wellbeing of his wife; Bode believed that he would keep acquiring more women to give birth to more children.

I looked at Bode and it was obvious that he didn’t earn much. Bode like many others hold the cultural believe that the Lord Almighty who gives children will take care of them. I believe that God is the giver of children and he also makes provision to care for them. However he expects us to be responsible therefore he will also hold us, parents accountable if we do not train and equip our children with all they need to become responsible men and women in the society.

I see many women at the grassroot suffer and struggle to take care of children because their husbands/men are busy donating babies to as many other women. Forgive me if I sound rather hard here.

Then there are men who will insist that the woman(his wife)  should just keep having as many babies as possible to the detriment of her health and the family’s wellbeing.

Family Planning means having the number of children one can care & provide for.

Family planning is key to preventing abortions. 

Family planning has helped couples who didn’t know any better to stop aborting babies. I have met a few couples who were able to relax in between births before having another baby and no longer had to abort unplanned pregnancy.

Life is all about the choices we make. These choices in turn make us and our future.

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

#SAFE MOTHERHOOD – Do You Know that Parts of a baby Forms 3 weeks after Conception? How to Have a Healthy Baby.

Your baby’s development and growth starts in the womb and not just after birth. Most times we begin to count a child’s age when he/she is born. I’d like to think that the nine months in the womb should be added. Yes, the life of any child begins at conception. It is therefore important that a woman understands that once she gets pregnant everything and anything she does can affect the development of her child.

As early as three weeks after conception occurs a baby’s organs internally and physically begins to form (head, hand, fingers, intestine, heart etc.) So it is very important for a mother to start eating right and taking care of herself right from the time she is aware that another life is growing in her. I would say even before you get pregnant eat right, eat a balanced diet and feed well. Then your body can have enough supply of nutrients, vitamins, minerals needed by you and your baby.

What you eat; how you take care of yourself and health during pregnancy matters.

Foods rich in nutrient to help your baby develop well in the womb:

  • Eat a lot of proteinous foods such as egg, fish, meat, beans, Moimoi, Akara(Bean Cake) – Helps your baby’s brain and muscle development.
    Specifically Beans – contains Zinc an important mineral that helps to give your baby adequate birth weight and cut down the risk of having a pre-term baby.
  • Fruits (Orange, banana, Apple, grapes, Guava, etc.) contain lots of vitamins.
  • Dairy products such as milk, yogurt – This is rich in calcium necessary for the development of your baby’s bones, teeth.
  • Foods rich in fiber such as oatmeal, cereals rich in wheat – This class of food contain vitamins and proteins.
  • Vegetables such as carrot, cabbage, efo tete, ugwu leaf and so much more – These are rich in vitamins and minerals.
  • Water is essential in helping organs of the body to function properly. Water aids digestion, circulation of nutrients in the body and oxygen flow in the body. Therefore water is very important in pregnancy. Take a lot of water in pregnancy.

Most malformation (birth defects) occur when the organs are forming and what can cause this include effects of drugs used without doctor’s prescription or exposure to radiation. 

Beware Alcohol, smoking and taking drugs without a doctor’s prescription can have serious implication on your baby.

Warning Alcohol affects the development and health of a baby in the womb and after birth.

Photo Credit: BBC

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

Breastfeeding #1: A Healthy Baby Bonding With Mother

Breastfeeding makes a happy and healthy baby.
Breastfeeding gives a mother great moments to bond with her child.
Breast milk contains all the nutrients your baby needs to grow healthy.

Exclusive Breastfeeding for the first 6 months of life is worth it. To achieve this companies and organizations need to provide baby care centers to enable nursing mothers breast feed their babies.

To Every Nursing Mother: Eat healthy by taking a balanced diet. Take a lot of fluid such as water, Pap/Ogi,  coca oat, tea and fruits🍉🍏🍋🍅🍓🍇. If you are from Africa particularly Nigeria abeg eat correct Amala, Eba, Future with a lot of vegetable. Hehehe enjoy!

Feed yourself very well in order to have the energy and strength to breastfeed your baby. That’s the way to take care of those hunger dizzy spells that occur after breastfeeding all night or any other time of day. 😀😀

Happy Breastfeeding Week.

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

Water is Essential in Health Facilities – SafeMotherhood #6

 

I was at a Primary Health Center(PHC)  to join in on a community mobilization effort to sensitize people about Family Planning and its benefit to women’s health and poverty reduction organized by NURHI Ibadan. While the group gathered I decided to visit the toilet to ease the pressure in my bladder and I asked the nurse on duty to point me in the direction of the toilet. I  was told that there was no water and was advised to pee in the bush somewhere around the back of the health center outside. It wasn’t funny but I had to afterall I have been in rusettings before 😕

It is unthinkable to run a hospital with little or no water supply. Yet that is the case in many primary health centers serving communities in Nigeria. Having worked on a maternal and child health program (Abiye)  for more than five years now many of the PHC my team visited and worked with lack access to clean water. 

Imagine a pregnant woman in labor pains coming to deliver at a PHC where there is no water… 

A few PHC are lucky to have a well or get a bore hole sunk by philanthropist, politicians who need to shine. But most do not have access to clean water to attend to patients.
If there is no water in a facility patients and health workers alike are exposed to serious health hazards.

Water is necessary to keep a hospital environment clean and everyone in it safe and healthy. It’s availability enables constant washing of hands by health care providers to prevent spread of diseases; to have a clean toilet; to conduct surgeries and wash hospital equipments and basically keep the hospital facility clean.

How can we ensure that clean water is accessible to primary health centers? Who is responsible for providing water? What can communities do you help their PHCs access water?

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

PRESS RELEASE: “IRETI EDA” Radio Program Returns: Weekly Program to Air in Oyo State

The “Get It Together” Campaign, led by the Nigerian Urban Reproductive Health Initiative 2 (NURHI 2), will launch 26 new episodes of their weekly radio program – Ireti Eda – during the week of July 14, 2017.

The new episodes of Ireti Eda in Oyo continue the captivating drama it was known for intermixed with real-life testimonials from community leaders, health service providers, and program listeners. This combination of entertaining and educational content encourages all Nigerians and Oyo people, in particular, to KNOW the facts about family planning, TALK to their partner, and GO for family planning services – the key message of NURHI 2’s Get It Together campaign.

“I like the radio program, Ireti Eda, because it educates us on Family Planning, especially through the drama characters, highlighting the need, importance, and methods of Family Planning. I do not miss any episode as I have learned a lot from the expert that answers questions also, as some of the things they said are things I have experienced as a woman. The program is very good and It it should be continued.Bunmi.

As in the previous three seasons, this radio program will feature the latest jams, real-life stories from satisfied family planning users, and the chance to win the weekly prize, which will be N1,000 recharge cards. The programs will also offer listeners the opportunity to call-in and speak directly with family planning experts, who answer their questions live on-air.

Dr. Mojisola Odeku, NURHI 2 Portfolio Director said “Listeners are hooked on the programs’ serial dramas and know they can trust the project to provide factual and accurate health information. Fans can even call-in to the program to have their questions answered by family planning experts, one of the more popular features.”

The new episodes of Ireti Eda radio program build on the success of the first seasons, NURHI 1’s popular radio programs, and the campaign’s 2016 hit song “Get It Together,” featuring Paul ‘P Square’ Okoye and Tiwa Savage. At the same time, NURHI 2 has helped establish a network of trained health providers offering friendly and confidential family planning services. NURHI 2 locations can be recognized by the blue, yellow and orange puzzle piece logo with signs that say ‘FP services available here.’

The new episodes’ premiere dates, radio stations, and broadcast times are as follows:

Oyo:
Splash 105.5FM: Fridays 3-4pm (Start date: July 14)
Amuludun 99.1FM: Mondays 3-4pm (Start Date: July 17)

Radio listeners can join in the conversation and see what other fans are saying on Get It Together’s official Facebook page: @getittogetherng

For more information please visit http://www.nurhitoolkit.org, send an email to info@nurhi.org or call Toyeke on 0905-261-5272.

About the Nigerian Urban Reproductive Health Initiative 2 (NURHI 2):

The Nigerian Urban Reproductive Health Initiative 2 (NURHI 2) funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation/T. J. Mather is using communication to increase demand for family planning among men and women. It is led by the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs (JHCCP) in partnership with the Center for Communication Programs Nigeria (CCPN).

Published as released by NURHI

Adebisi Adetunji (C)