Infant mortality is something that affects billions of people around the world each day. And while we live in the United States where our medical practices are much more modernized than a lot of the world, billions of people around the world feel unsafe to become a mother.
Africa is probably one of the most unsafe places to become a mother. Each year, 21 percent of births, 40 percent of the maternal deaths and 33 percent of baby deaths occur there. According to a new encyclopedia of Africa article, there is one main reason that Africa has such a vast amount of child deaths; their varied population, including factors of religion, and traditional forms of healthcare. There are also a few other reasons that infant death in Africa is so high.
Poverty is one of the huge reasons that babies are born either still, or are lost completely. Mothers in Africa and other third-world countries don?t have the access to basic healthcare that is needed when pregnant. Many women are very poor and are forced into prostitution because it?s the only profession they can find just to feed their families. This leads to unwanted children and millions of STD?s. This is one of the main reasons HIV/AIDS is spreading so fast in Africa.
According to the encyclopedia of Africa, literacy rates run at 59 percent for men and 36 percent for women. But literacy and typical schooling isn?t the only thing Africans aren?t learning - they also aren?t learning reproductive health. They aren?t learning that they need to use birth control in order to not get pregnant, and they also aren?t learning the habits that can be dangerous to a mothers or a baby?s life.
Nutrition is also a huge reason for lost children and motherhood death. Almost 40 percent of Africans are undernourished. Not eating enough food to provide for a baby is one of the number one reasons for miscarriage all over the world. A major part of poor nutrition is the mother becoming anemic. It?s estimated that over one half of women in Africa are anemic. This can lead to major pregnancy problems and even miscarriage.
Age is a huge factor in prenatal deaths. Almost every single teenager in Africa is either married or pregnant, or both. The average number of births per woman is six or more. It creates a cycle that can only be broken by literacy and adequate education. It creates a cycle that causes poverty and then just continues into more teenage pregnancy and marriage. Teenager?s bodies are also not created for pregnancy. Being a teenager is a time to let your body grow into womanhood, it?s not a time to be pregnant.
In all, everything relates back to the key concept that experts believe the problems with miscarriage and maternal and prenatal death is the traditional thinking of Africans and other third world countries. They also talk about many of the other reasons that miscarriage is a problem in developing countries are things like poverty, bad nutrition and no great education.