Got an idea for a holiday? Send it to us

Submit Now

National Birth Defects Prevention Month – January 2023

The National Birth Defects Prevention Month during January has only one purpose, and that’s to protect our future generations. Even though birth defects have been occurring in children for centuries, it is still a worrisome issue that can be controlled when the mother takes care of her own health. Yes, not all birth defects can be prevented, but many are reliant on the mother’s lifestyle. Hence, the observance of this month is essential to encourage parents to do what’s best for their babies. Get ready to be flooded with knowledge, and remember to take up the duty of spreading awareness afterward.

History of National Birth Defects Prevention Month

Birth defects in babies occur across the globe and largely contribute to infant mortality. Unfortunately, one does not need to have a family history of birth defects as even those with a healthy bloodline may have a child with birth defects. Even though many birth defects can be treated or cured, some are permanent and have an impact on the child’s quality of life.

Birth defects are structural changes that affect one or more parts of the body. This includes the heart, brain, feet, hands, e.t.c. These defects are formed during the first three months of the pregnancy when the baby’s organs are forming. The cause? The health of a parent, or exposure to substances can cause issues in the baby’s development. Some of the common birth defects include congenital heart defects, cleft lip, spina bifida, anotia, and microtia. Between 1999 and 2001 in the U.S., mouth and facial defects were found in 6,776 babies per year, whereas 6,527 babies per year were affected by heart defects. Stomach and intestinal defects occurred in 2,883 babies per year, and musculoskeletal defects, which include arm and leg defects, affected 5,799 babies per year.

It is due to the dire impact of birth defects that January has been proclaimed National Birth Defects Prevention Month. The purpose is to teach and remind women about the role they can play in ensuring the health of their unborn children. For instance, the C.D.C. recommends 400 micrograms of folic acid to prevent major health defects. Vaccines and flu shots are also recommended to the mother.

National Birth Defects Prevention Month timeline

1941
A Cause is Found

Maternal rubella is identified as a cause of birth defects. 

1960s
In Deep

Studies on the living fetus start.

1961
The Dangerous Drug

The teratogenic drug is pulled from the market due to problems it causes in pregnancies.

1973
The Reward

The Basil O'Connor Starter Scholarship Research Awards assists young scientists as they begin their careers in birth defects research.

National Birth Defects Prevention Month FAQs

Which months are the most critical when birth defects can occur?

Birth defects occur in the first three months of the pregnancy.

What is the most preventable birth defect?

Disorders related to prenatal alcohol exposure are the most preventable. It is important for pregnant women to stay away from any intoxicant or stimulant as that is one of the easiest ways to prevent birth defects.

What vitamin helps prevent birth defects?

Vitamins such as folic acid help in preventing birth defects.

How to Observe National Birth Defects Prevention Month

  1. Create an educative space

    Since doctors have years of education, and sometimes, experience, people tend to listen to their advice more. Do your part in connecting a doctor with a crowd of people to spread awareness.

  2. Talk to pregnant women

    Women who are pregnant are the most in need of ways to protect babies from birth defects. Share your knowledge and resources with pregnant women to celebrate the day.

  3. Create awareness on social media

    Create awareness for all the people on your friends or followers list. Start by posting about the causes of birth defects and how they may be prevented.

5 Facts About Birth Defects

  1. Babies with birth defects

    One in 33 U.S. babies is born with a major birth defect each year.

  2. The leading cause of infant mortality

    One in five infant deaths is due to birth defects.

  3. Birth defects and pregnancy

    Birth defects can occur throughout pregnancy but are most common in the first trimester.

  4. The use of alcohol and other drugs

    Substance usage during pregnancy can cause problems for a developing baby.

  5. Number of babies with birth defects

    Approximately 120,000 babies born each year in the United States alone have birth defects.

Why National Birth Defects Prevention Month is Important

  1. It spreads knowledge

    This month, in-depth research is presented to spread knowledge regarding several birth defects that may occur in newborn babies. This is important in the fight for better standards of living.

  2. It works to prevent birth defects cases

    The purpose of the month is to ensure the reduction of birth defects. This is achieved by providing pregnant women with easy access to the dos and don’ts.

  3. It garners support

    The more you know about birth defects and why they occur, the better you are able to provide support to parents whose babies are affected.

National Birth Defects Prevention Month dates

YearDateDay
2023January 1Sunday
2024January 1Monday
2025January 1Wednesday
2026January 1Thursday
2027January 1Friday
Celebration of Life Week
Diet Resolution Week
National Silent Record Week
National Time Consciousness Week
New Year’s Resolutions Week
The World Series of Beer Pong
Apple Gifting Day
Bonza Bottler Day
Commitment Day
Copyright Law Day
Ellis Island Day
Euro Day
Global Family Day
Haiti Independence Day
International Public Domain Day
Mummer's Parade
National Bloody Mary Day
National First-Foot Day
National Hangover Day
National Shepherd Day
New Year's Day
New Year’s Dishonor List Day
Polar Bear Plunge Day
Public Domain Day
Ring a Bell Day
Rose Bowl Game
Solemnity of Mary
Sudan Independence Day
Triumph of the Revolution
Universal Hour of Peace
World Day of Peace
Z Day
Apple and Apricot Month
Artichoke and Asparagus Month
Be Kind To Food Servers Month
Bread Machine Baking Month
California Dried Plum Digestive Month
California Restaurant Month
Celebration Of Life Month
Cervical Health Awareness Month
Children Impacted by Parent's Cancer Month
Clap 4 Health Month
Dry January
Family Fit Lifestyle Month
Financial Wellness Month
Get A Balanced Life Month
Get Ireland Active
Get Organized Month
Ginuary
International Brain Teaser Month
International Change Your Stars Month
International Child-Centered Divorce Month
International Creativity Month
International Quality of Life Month
International Wayfinding Month
International Wealth Mentality Month
Learn to Ski and Snowboard Month
Little Things Mental Health Campaign
Manuary
March of Dimes Birth Defects Prevention Month
National Adopt a Rescued Bird Month
National Bath Safety Month
National Be On-Purpose Month
National Birth Defects Prevention Month
National Black Diamond Month
National Blood Donor Month
National Book Blitz Month
National Braille Literacy Month
National CBD Month
National Clean Up Your Computer Month
National Codependency Awareness Month
National Conscience Month
National Eye Care Month
National Fiber Focus Month
National Glaucoma Awareness Month
National Hobby Month
National Hot Tea Month
National Mail Order Gardening Month
National Meat Month
National Mentoring Month
National Menudo Month
National Oatmeal Month
National Personal Trainer Awareness Month
National Polka Music Month
National Poverty in America Awareness Month
National Pre-Pregnancy Awareness Month
National Radon Action Month
National Skating Month
National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month
National Slow Cooking Month
National Soup Month
National Stalking Awareness Month
National Staying Healthy Month
National Sunday Supper Month
National Thank You Month
National Train Your Dog Month
National Volunteer Blood Donor Month
National Wheat Bread Month
Poverty Awareness Month
Prune Breakfast Month
Receding Gums Awareness Month
Retail Bakers Month
Rising Star Month
Self-Love Month
Shape Up US Month
START Child Health campaign
Teen Driving Awareness Month
Thyroid Awareness Month
Tubers and Dried Fruit Month
Unchain a Dog Month
Veganuary
Walk Your Dog Month

Want to sponsor this holiday?

Holidays Straight to Your Inbox

Every day is a holiday!
Receive fresh holidays directly to your inbox.