“A pregnancy without problems is not frequent – in fact it is quite rare.”
These are the words of valued Safe Motherhood Week luminary Dr. Lode Dewulf, spoken during his address at the first Brussels TEDxWomen event last year.
TEDxBrusselsWomen aims to bring a group of innovative thinkers and doers to share their ideas with the community. Last year’s event had a focus on health technology, and a varied panel of inspiring women from different backgrounds such as technology, entrepreneurship, health, and science shared their stories on stage.
Dr. Dewulf spoke of the “new reality” of motherhood, where first-time mothers are older, and where a complicated pregnancy is no longer an unusual occurrence.
During his presentation, Dr. Dewulf outlined results from the ground-breaking Safe MotherHood 2016 survey, explaining that just six per cent of respondents said they had not encountered a problem during their pregnancy.
“This means that, statistically speaking, a normal pregnancy will encounter at least one or two problems.”
Dr. Dewulf outlined recent data that showed the rising age of first-time mothers, and told the audience that it is about finding solutions to support these new realities; Apple and Facebook offer female employees a grant to freeze their eggs, for example.
Social media and the digital revolution will also continue to shape the face of pregnancy, and using these platforms can help us learn more than ever about pregnancy and motherhood, he explained.
It is estimated that a quarter of a million women in the USA enter some data about their pregnancy into an app or their phone every single day. Harnessing even a fraction of this data could dramatically enhance our knowledge of pregnancy.
“It is about time that we change the story of motherhood, and find new modern definitions of what is normal in motherhood, based on the facts.”
Watch Dr. Lode Dewulf’s TEDxWomen talk here: