- Advertisement -

PROUD SUPPORTER

Monday, 21 September 2020

CHARITY TODAY AWARDS

Cleft lip and palate – 5 facts that will probably surprise you

- Advertisement -

JULY marked Cleft Awareness Month. Even though more than 200,000 new babies with clefts are born globally each year, many people are still unaware of what cleft lip and palate is and the impact it can have.

To help raise further awareness of the condition, here Susannah Schaefer, President and CEO of the international children’s cleft charity Smile Train, shares five facts about cleft lip and palate which you might be interested to know.

FACT 1 A CLEFT LIP AND A CLEFT PALATE ARE NOT THE SAME

Susannah Schaefer said:

“A cleft lip occurs when the structures that form the upper lip do not fuse together properly in the womb. It can either be a small notch, or a wide gap that reaches the nose and can affect either one or both sides of the lip.

“A cleft palate occurs when the roof of the mouth does not form properly. It can either be a hole or opening in the roof or top of the mouth.

“A baby can be born with a cleft lip, or a cleft palate, or both.”

Osawa 8 months after surgery

FACT 2 – CLEFTS ARE MORE COMMON THAN YOU THINK

Susannah Schaefer said:

“There are more than 200,000 babies born with a cleft lip and/or palate every year around the world. In fact, a baby is born with a cleft every three minutes.

“Many people in the UK are surprised by this fact, largely because treatment is offered for free through the NHS and is typically performed shortly after the baby is born – so it’s rare to see children with untreated clefts here.

“However, for babies born with a cleft in other countries around the world, access to quality healthcare is limited, which means that they may grow up without proper cleft treatment.

“Thankfully, Smile Train empowers local medical professionals with training, funding, and resources so that they can go on to provide 100% free cleft surgery and comprehensive cleft care within their communities, transforming the lives of these children by giving them a new forever smile.”

FACT 3 – IN SOME AREAS OF THE WORLD, CHILDREN BORN WITH A CLEFT ARE ISOLATED

Susannah Schaefer said:

“Sadly there are some parts of the world where children are shunned or isolated by their communities if they are born with a cleft because they are ‘different’.

“For example, in Ethiopia, some people mistakenly believe that a curse causes a baby to be born with a cleft. It can, therefore, be very difficult for families that have children with a cleft in this country – as they feel they need to hide their children away.

“For this reason, it is imperative that people in countries around the world are properly educated on the condition – and have access to the proper treatment and care that they need. Smile Train works to raise awareness about cleft so that people in these communities are helped rather than shunned.”

FACT 4 – A CLEFT CAN CAUSE ISSUES BEYOND COSMETIC CONCERN

Susannah Schaefer said:

“Many people are surprised to learn that a cleft causes serious problems beyond cosmetic concerns. This includes difficulties with eating, breathing, speaking, hearing, and dental health.

“Because of these difficulties, it’s vital that babies born with a cleft receive care beyond the surgery, including nutrition services, speech and language therapy, and dental services – to help alleviate the associated issues caused by cleft which often cannot be treated through surgery alone.”

FACT 5 – CLEFTS CAN BE TREATED

Susannah Schaefer said:

“In as little as 45 minutes, a simple cleft surgery can change a child’s life forever. During cleft surgery, the surgeon will join the tissues that did not fuse properly during birth – providing immediate transformation.

“While surgery for both cleft lip and palate should be carried out shortly after birth, it can still be successful when carried out at later ages.”

- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -

Stay Connected

1,362FansLike
1,834FollowersFollow
30,076FollowersFollow
1,200SubscribersSubscribe

Must Read

Revolutionary piece of equipment will support surgeons operating during pandemic

LEEDS Cares funds revolutionary piece of equipment to help support surgeons operating during the pandemic. Leeds Cares has announced that Leeds Teaching Hospitals is now...

New report: How to tackle climate change through community action

THE National Lottery Community Fund has today published a new report sharing learning and insights from recent environmental projects made possible thanks to National...
- Advertisement -

Employment News

Samaritans appoints Keith Leslie as new Chair of Trustees

THE leading suicide prevention charity in the UK and ROI has appointed Keith Leslie as the new Chair of Trustees at Samaritans. Keith joins Samaritans...

The Big Issue makes two new appointments

THE Big Issue is expanding its reporting team with the appointment of a new Digital Editor and the newly created role of Digital Producer. Alastair...

New asbestos-related cancer nurse specialist appointed for South Tyneside and Sunderland

JOANNE Anderson has been appointed as a new Mesothelioma UK Clinical Nurse Specialist at South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust. Joanne will be...

Related News

Cardiff dementia researchers supported by South Wales Freemasons

RESEARCH into a crucial protein linked to the development of Alzheimer's has been supported by a £76,000 grant from South Wales Freemasons. The grant is...

£25m fund to support the Arts announced by the Garfield Weston Foundation

THE Weston family are launching a new £25m fund to support the cultural sector as it attempts to recover following the impact of COVID-19....

The Burdett Trust for Nursing awards grant to Mesothelioma UK

INDEPENDENT charitable trust, The Burdett Trust for Nursing is donating a £10,000 grant to Mesothelioma UK, the national asbestos-related cancer charity. The funding will...

“MS turned my ‘perfect life’ into a living nightmare,” says gold-medalist Stephanie Millward MBE

PARALYMPIC gold medallist Stephanie Millward MBE will be swimming 100 kilometres to raise funds for the MS Society. The 39-year-old, who has multiple sclerosis (MS),...

End of an era for Cheshire Charity Chief

LEADING Cheshire Charity Active Cheshire has formally announced the departure of their long-serving CEO, Anne Boyd. Anne has led the Charity for 8 years, transforming,...
- Advertisement -
X