Most people have heard of the March of Dimes. The organization was originally called the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis. It was established by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1939 in response to the nation's polio epidemic. March of Dimes was actually a play on words used to describe one of their fundraising campaigns. Eventually, the organization's name was changed to the March of Dimes. With their help, the polio vaccine was developed and the disease was all but wiped out in the United States.
Since 1958, the March of Dimes has been concerned with birth defects and premature/low birth weight babies. This is what many people think of when they think of this organization. But, did you know that they also have some excellent information on miscarriage on their site as well?
Although miscarriage is not listed in any of the main headings on their homepage, you can type it into their search box and you will come up with 168 results. The very first article is a fairly thorough overview of what miscarriage is and many of the factors that are thought to cause it. Other articles address sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), Rubella, and pregnancy after the age of 35 among other issues. There is an excellent article explaining how chromosomal abnormalities occur. Chromosomal abnormalities are responsible for many first trimester miscarriages. Other article topics include preconception, food borne illnesses and diabetes in pregnancy. There additional topics of interest in relation to miscarriage as well.
In addition to information about potential causes of miscarriage, the March of Dimes also offers bereavement materials for women who have suffered a miscarriage, stillbirth or infant death.. These, according to their website, include information available on the site “plus additional resources”. These are available in English and Spanish and can be ordered free by clicking a link on their site.
The site also offers ways to help. These include donating money as well as the opportunity to participate in fundraising walks, bike rides and golf tournaments. Other opportunities for volunteers also are described on their website. The site also offers visitors a place to share their stories or to sign up for their newsletters. I know that after my miscarriages, I felt very strongly that I wanted to reach out to other women who'd experienced miscarriages. For me and for many women, the opportunity to volunteer and help someone else remains an essential part of the healing process.