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When you are pregnant, there are a plethora of decisions that have to be made. What will you name your baby, what color will the nursery be, what brand of diapers should you buy? So many questions, and so little time! But one question that is worth some consideration and time is banking your child's cord blood. Should you do it? How much does it cost? Is it worth it? There are many questions that come along with this decision, and many options to weigh, and it is one filled with emotions, but it is certainly something worth thinking about.
What Is Cord Blood Banking?
Cord blood banking is the practice of retrieving the blood from inside the umbilical cord (the part of the placenta that delivers nutrition to your baby while still in the uterus). The blood from within the umbilical cord contains a wealth of nutrients, including blood-forming stem cells. These stem cells are extremely useful for treating a host of illnesses and diseases. It may not be easy to think about right now, that your child or someone in your family could become ill someday, but by having your child's cord blood stored, those stem cells hold the potential to a cure.
What Kind Of Illnesses Can Cord Blood Be Used For?
Science has made incredible leaps and bounds throughout the years, and with years of research it has been found that cord blood can treat an incredible amount of diseases and illnesses. Some of them include:
• Many types of leukemia
• Blood disorders
• Immune disorders
• Metabolic disorders
• Regenerative medicine
Stem cells can also be used for research purposes and clinical trials to either find new ways to treat diseases or to improve on the ways we treat them now.
What Does The Collection Process Entail and Does It Hurt My Baby?
The removal of the cord blood from the umbilical cord is actually a painless process. It is not something that you have to do yourself, it is usually your medical professional, be it OB/GYN or your midwife, they are trained in collecting the cord blood and storing it in the proper container. From there you will have likely read instructions before the delivery of how the process works. Usually there is a courier that you'll have to call to come and pick up the package with the cord blood in it, to transport it to the facility that you've chosen to store your child's cord blood.
How Much Does Cord Blood Banking Cost?
There is no clear-cut answer to this question. There are many companies to choose from when it comes to banking. It is a matter of doing the research to find out which one is best for you and which one will suit you and your family's needs the best. Many companies usually offer a payment plan option for families who cannot pay upfront for the collection and storage fees. As an alternative, you can choose to donate your child's cord blood to a public bank for other families in need.
Banking your child's cord blood is no doubt a huge decision to make, one that will take time, plenty of thought and research. There are plenty of resources on the internet to give you the tools you'll need to help you make your decision. If you are interested in banking your child's cord blood, you can talk to your medical professional about it.