Finding the support for you and your family after suffering a birth injury
- AuthorTrevor Ward
Welcoming a new life into the world should be a time of joy and celebration. However, for some families, the birthing process can take an unexpected and difficult turn, resulting in injuries to newborns or mothers. Coping with the aftermath of a birth injury can be emotionally and physically challenging, but fortunately, there is help available. In this article, we will explore the crucial support for families who have suffered a birth injury, including the role of support groups and the part they can play in recovery.
Understanding birth injuries
Before delving into the support available, it is essential to understand what a birth injury is. A birth injury refers to any physical harm that occurs to a newborn or mother before, during or immediately after the birthing process. These injuries can range from mild to severe, and may also cause include conditions such as cerebral palsy, Erb's palsy, brachial plexus injuries, and fractures. Birth injuries can be caused by several factors; such as medical negligence, difficult deliveries, or unforeseen complications.
Birth injury support groups
One valuable resource for families dealing with the aftermath of a birth injury are support groups. These groups consist of individuals who have experienced similar challenges, and can provide emotional support, guidance, and a sense of community during a challenging time. Below are some key benefits of joining a birth injury support group:
Emotional Support: Dealing with a birth injury can be emotionally overwhelming. Support groups offer a safe space where parents can share their feelings, fears, and frustrations with others who understand their experiences.
Information Sharing: Birth injury support groups often provide valuable information about medical treatments, therapies, and legal resources. Members can exchange information and advice based on their own experiences.
Advocacy and Awareness: Many support groups also engage in advocacy efforts to raise awareness about birth injuries and promote changes in healthcare practices to prevent future occurrences.
These groups focus on addressing the unique challenges parents and caregivers face when caring for a child or mother with a birth injury. Here are some advantages of joining childbirth injury support groups:
MASIC Foundation: This is a foundation which supports women who have suffered serious injuries during childbirth. They aim to advocate for women and aim to change the lives of those injured during childbirth
Birth Trauma Association: have a team of peer supporter (parents) who connect with others facing similar challenges and share strategies for managing day-to-day life, accessing healthcare services, and planning for the future.
Mumsaid: Although not a specific birth injury support group, the charity is there to support mothers and their families across a range of issues surrounding pregnancy.
Further support can be found in the table below:
Action against Medical Accidents (AvMA)
AvMA is a charity which represents and stands up for people affected medical accident/negligence.
The Patients Association
A charity supporting patients
MRSA Action UK
A charity that supports people affected by hospital associated infections
A charity that supports people with mental stress
The Erb’s Palsy Group
A charity that offers support for families living with Erb’s Palsy
Association for Improvements in the Maternity Services (AIMS)
An organisation aiming to improve maternity services
Finding birth injury support
To find birth injury support groups, consider the following steps:
Medical Professionals: Consult with your child's healthcare providers, such as paediatricians or therapists, who may have information on local support groups or online communities.
Online Resources: Search online for birth injury support groups and consider joining online forums and social media groups dedicated to birth injury support.
Nonprofit Organisations: Many nonprofit organisations, such as the Birth Trauma Association, offer resources and information about support groups.
Dealing with the aftermath of a birth injury can be challenging, but families do not have to face it alone. Birth injury support groups play a vital role in providing emotional support, information, and a sense of community to those in need. By connecting with others who have experienced similar struggles, families can find strength, resilience, and hope on their journey toward healing and recovery.