Inherited Disorders: How Newborn Health Screening Can Make a Difference
Ensuring your baby is healthy and happy is the number one goal of any great parent. Unfortunately, when it comes to health, parents cannot always protect their little one. According to the CDC, 1 in 33 births involve a birth defect of some kind. There are a range of conditions and diseases that make up this statistic, however in this blog we will focus on inherited diseases and how they play a role for your child.
Fortunately, with the advancements in technology, there are ways to detect these genetic mutations early on. Newborn Health Screening, also known as genomic testing, can help to identify genetic mutations associated with inherited disorders, allowing for proactive measures to prevent or manage these conditions with your baby. In this blog, we will discuss the importance of newborn health screening in understanding and managing genetic diseases and how it can make a difference in your child’s life.
What are Inherited Disorders?
Inherited disorders are a significant health concern for many families, as they can have a profound impact on a child’s health and well-being. These conditions are caused by genetic mutations that are passed down from generation to generation, and can cause a wide range of health problems.
It’s important to understand that inherited disorders can occur in families with no prior history of the condition as well. Genetic mutations that cause these conditions can be present in individuals who do not show any symptoms. This is why it’s important to detect these conditions early on, so that your child’s healthcare providers can take steps to manage the condition and improve outcomes.
In some cases, inherited disorders can be prevented or managed through lifestyle changes, such as adjusting the diet, taking medication, or monitoring their health closely. In other cases, there may not be a cure or effective treatment available, but early detection and management can still help to improve outcomes and reduce the risk of long-term health problems.
Some of the most common inherited disorders include:
Cystic fibrosis: a genetic disorder that affects the lungs and digestive system and can cause serious respiratory problems, digestive issues, and reduced lung function.
Sickle cell anemia: a genetic blood disorder that can cause painful episodes, increased risk of infections, and organ damage.
Tay-Sachs disease: a rare genetic disorder that affects the nervous system and can cause severe developmental delays, blindness, and paralysis.
These inherited disorders can have a profound impact on a person’s life, as they can cause a wide range of health problems and affect a person’s physical, intellectual, and emotional well-being. They can also have a significant impact on a person’s quality of life, as they can limit mobility and reduce overall health and well-being.
How Newborn Genomic Testing Can Help Prevent Genetic Diseases
Newborn genomic testing is a cutting-edge technology that uses a simple saliva or blood test to sequence a baby’s DNA and identify any genetic mutations that may be associated with inherited disorders. This type of testing can provide parents with valuable information about their child’s health and well-being, and can help healthcare providers to diagnose and treat any issues that may arise.
By identifying genetic mutations associated with inherited disorders, newborn genomic testing can help to prevent or manage these conditions. For example, if a newborn is found to have a genetic mutation that increases their risk for a particular condition, such as cystic fibrosis, healthcare providers can take steps to manage the condition more effectively. This can improve the child’s life and reduce the risk of long-term health problems.
In addition to identifying genetic mutations, newborn genomic testing can also help to detect disease risks for newborns. This type of testing can identify genetic mutations that may increase a child’s risk for certain conditions, such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, and metabolic disorders. By understanding their child’s disease risks, parents can work closely with healthcare providers to ensure the proper care is provided.
The Benefits of Newborn Health Screening
There are several key benefits to newborn health screening, including:
One of the most significant benefits of newborn genomic testing is that it can detect genetic mutations early on, before they become more serious. This can help healthcare providers to diagnose and treat any issues more effectively, which can improve outcomes and reduce the risk of long-term health problems.
Personalized Medical Care:
Newborn genomic testing can also provide parents with valuable information about their child’s unique genetic makeup, which can be used to personalize their medical care. For example, if a child is found to be at increased risk for a particular condition, healthcare providers can take steps to monitor and manage the condition more closely.
Improved Understanding of Inherited Conditions:
Newborn genomic testing can also help parents to better understand any inherited conditions that may run in their family. This can help them to make informed decisions about their child’s health and well-being, and can provide peace of mind for parents who may be worried about the impact of genetics on their child’s health.
By identifying genetic mutations early on, newborn genomic testing can also lead to better outcomes for children. For example, if a child is diagnosed with a genetic condition, healthcare providers can take steps to manage the condition more effectively. This can help children to lead healthier, happier, and more fulfilling lives.
Newborn genomic testing can also be useful for family planning, as it can help parents to understand the potential impact of genetics on their child’s health and well-being. This can help them to make informed decisions about having additional children and to take steps to manage or prevent any health issues that may arise.
Inherited disorders can have a major impact on a person’s health, whether during childhood or later in life. It’s critical that families gain insight into what inherited disorders they have passed on to create a better healthcare plan for their child. With the advancements in technology, newborn genomic testing can help to identify genetic mutations associated with these conditions, allowing for proactive measures to prevent or manage these conditions.
Newborn health screening can provide parents with valuable information about their child’s health and can help healthcare providers to diagnose and treat issues that may arise. With its numerous benefits, newborn genomic testing is an option that parents may want to consider for their child.
If you’re considering newborn genomic testing, it’s important to work with a healthcare provider to understand what is best for your family. With the right support and guidance, newborn genomic testing can help you give your child the best possible start in life and to provide them with the care and support they need to thrive.
myNewborn Health Screening
Now that you understand newborn health screening and you’ve talked with your doctor about the benefits for your family, it’s time to sign up and prepare your kit to swab your newborn!
Americord is proud to offer myNewborn Health Screening, an advanced health screening test that analyzes your child’s DNA for nearly 400 genetic and metabolic conditions that may manifest during childhood. We believe that by investing in your child’s health with myNewborn Health Screening, you can take a proactive approach to their wellbeing from the start. With early detection, you can take the necessary steps to ensure your child receives the support and personalized healthcare they need to thrive throughout their life.
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