Beyond Labels

DO YOUR PART TO REDUCE STIGMA
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Discover how you can help reduce health-related stigma among all moms and babies so they can get the support and care they need.

Stigma is giving someone an undesirable label based on negative social perceptions.

Designed for people who work in health-related fields, this interactive site will help you learn how stigma can impact the healthcare and support women need, seek and receive. Scroll down the page to discover why stigma happens, hear stories about the impact of stigma, and learn specific ways you can become a change agent to reduce stigma in your workplace or community.

January is Birth Defects Awareness Month.

Birth defects are structural changes that affect one or more parts of the body, and affect 1 in 33 babies born in the U.S. each year. Genetics, behaviors, and social and environmental factors  can  impact  the risk for  birth defects, and not all birth defects can be prevented.   

This year’s Birth Defects Awareness Month theme is “Every Journey Matters” and calls to raise awareness of birth defects, steps one can take to prevent them, and their impact on individuals, parents, and families. This is also a time to highlight efforts to improve the health of people living with these conditions and widen the available network of support.

Join us for National Birth Defects Awareness Month by following #EveryJourneyMatters and #BirthDefects, and visiting March of Dimes at marchofdimes.org/birthdefects.

WHY DOES STIGMA MATTER?

Stigma keeps people from the best possible care. Women with substance use disorders, infectious diseases, mental health, or other health conditions can often feel judged and blamed by family, friends, and healthcare providers, which can keep them from getting the care they need.

THE EFFECTS OF STIGMA

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Social Isolation

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Poor Quality of Life

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Less Access to Healthcare

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Delayed Diagnoses

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Reduced Adherence to Treatments

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Illness and Death

LIFT THE WEIGHT OF WORDS

“Words are things….They get on the walls. They get in your wallpaper. They get in your rugs, in your upholstery, and your clothes, and finally in to you.”
– Maya Angelou