Cleft Palate Research Paper

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Hope for the Cleft Palate and the Cleft Lip

Every three minutes, a child with a cleft palate or lip is born into the world. In third-world countries, a lot of these children perish even before they reach their first birthday. However, those who survive are luckier by a big margin, because they have to deal with their physical deformity and the stigma associated with it for the rest of their lives.

The Cleft Lip and the Cleft Palate Explained

The cleft lip and the cleft palate are birth defects also known as orofacial clefts. These clefts result from the inability of the baby’s lip and palate to form properly while the child is inside the mother’s womb.

1. The Cleft Lip. This is a condition characterized by a separation of the two sides
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Cleft palate affects as many as 2,600 babies each year, while around 4,400 babies are born with a cleft lip (with or without a cleft palate). There is a higher occurrence of orofacial clefts in Asian, Latino and Native American children. Boys are two times more prone to having a cleft lip (with or without a cleft palate), while girls are two times more likely to have a cleft palate without a cleft lip.

Orofacial Cleft Causes

Exactly what causes orofacial clefts remain unknown, although many doctors and scientists are of the belief that genetics and environmental factors play a part in the occurrence of cleft lip and cleft palate. CDC studies report that the following can increase the risk of cleft occurrence in babies:

1. Genetics. Family history can contribute to the occurrence of orofacial clefts. Parents who have a history of clefts in their respective families are more likely to have babies with cleft lips and palates than parents wjho do not.

2. Smoking. There is a higher incidence of orofacial cleft in babies whose mothers smoke during the course of their

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