Family planning is a fundamental right of every human being. – United Nations
If nations want to break the cycle of poverty, the government should invest in family planning and reproductive health improvements. Investing in sustainable family planning will address poverty, maternal and child health, gender equality, and human rights.
With the emerging issues in family planning, several women who are in the reproductive age can benefit the programs.
From the United Nation’s report in 2015, the estimates and projections of population growth suggest that the poorest countries and its government have a hard time to eradicate poverty and inequality.
Although the link between household size and poverty is unmatched– “large families are poorer,” the rapid population growth can increase the number of poor people. Thus, studies suggest that families who have access to family planning have the ability to fight overpopulation, which is a great help in eradicating poverty.
Thus, family planning is considered as one of the most effective interventions to foster human development.
Family planning contributes in ending hunger. Nearly half of all childhood deaths are caused by malnutrition. Malnutrition-related causes include growth stunt, vitamin deficiencies, underweight, and wasting.
If women have access to family planning services, they will have the understanding of pregnancy timing and spacing to ensure a healthy and nutritional outcome. The right pregnancy timing occurs after the age of 18, when the woman has grown and developed well from adolescence.
In addition, pregnancy spacing should be at least 3 years between births. It helps mothers have more time, energy, and resources to replenish essential nutrients. It also helps them practice breastfeeding longer.
Good Health and Well-being
Aside from children dying from malnutrition, approximately 830 women die from pregnancy and childbirth-related causes. Based on the demographics, these high-risk pregnancies occurred too early or too late in the mother’s age, pregnancies are closely spaced, or the pregnancies are high parity.
If women are educated, women will know the right time, space, and number of pregnancy they should have. Moreover, if men are given the opportunity to participate in family planning, they become more respectful to women.
In addition to good health and well-being, family planning prevents the transmission of HIV/AIDS. Promoting contraceptives in family planning does not only reduce unintended and close gapped pregnancies, the correct and consistent use of condoms curb the HIV/AIDS epidemic.
Thus, Governments should pursue family planning and reproductive health services to the general public.
Unfortunately, early and unintended pregnancy can be both the cause and consequence of dropping out of school. Adolescent pregnancy affects themselves, their families, the communities, and the society as a whole.
Introducing family planning in early reproductive age helps women determine the right time for pregnancy. More so, women who have become mothers can stay in school and become literate.
Women who are younger, with lower educational levels and income most likely experience unintended pregnancies because they have less access to family planning services. Although family planning is geared to women, men should also have adequate access to the services.
Preconception care or the care before pregnancy should be given by women of reproductive age. The care program is a set of interventions that identifies and reduces the risks to a woman’s health, and improves pregnancy outcomes. Receivers of preconception care are encouraged by health care professionals to develop a reproductive life plan.
Reproductive life plans are a set of goals and actions that are rooted from personal values and sources. It guides the clients in deciding when to become pregnant and have children, or not have children.
Several women do not have the chance to make and act on decisions that affect their reproductive lives. Women’s access and decisions to their chosen family planning method, and their will to decide the use of methods strongly support the equality and empowerment of both gender.
What to Expect in Becoming a Parent?
There’s a lot to expect and prepare in becoming a parent– and it is quite stressful.
You have to be emotionally ready for pregnancy and motherhood. There’s an alteration of your hormones which can affect your mood. You have to prepare yourself from the constant attention, love, and care your baby needs from you. Other than your newborn baby, you have to attend your needs and your husband’s. That’s why motherhood takes a lot of work. You should be prepared when the time comes.
Aside from taking care of your newborn baby, you have a lot of household chores to take care. You need to make meals, clean the house, laundry your dirty clothes– and, there’s extra work since you need to separate your newborn’s clothes when washing. You have to be mentally and physically prepared for these chores. Let your husband take care of you and your newborn baby, too. Delegate tasks to avoid stressful moments. According to Liox Laundry, a laundry service provider in New York, outsourcing some house chores helps families spend more time together – where it matters the most.
Parenthood requires a lot of adjustment, you have to build a healthy environment for your growing family. However, what should you do if you are underage? How much more if you are not financially and emotionally stable and physically ready for it? Thus, Governments should invest in sustainable family planning.
Invest in Sustainable Family Planning to Achieve Goals
If we follow the timeframe of the Sustainable Development Goals, the gap between the developed and developing countries will close. The goals and programs will help eradicate poverty, feed the hungry, provide proper education, and improve the health and well-being of the people.
Although sustainable family planning involves both men and women, it empowers women to decide on the spacing, number, and timing of their pregnancy. Sustainable family planning accelerates progress across the themes of Sustainable Development Goals– people, planet, peace, partnership, and prosperity.
Without the universal access to family planning and reproductive health, the impact and effectiveness of other interventions will be less and change will be longer to achieve. Thus, Governments should prioritize family planning and treat it as a foundational component of health, rights, and long-term development strategies.