Having a baby is an exciting time but there are also many fears that parents go through. One of those is what will happen if the baby develops an illness where there is little chance of a matching donor? Blood cord banking is an excellent option for many parents but does cost a lot of money. However, you need to question whether you can put a price on the life of your child.
Not Just for the Baby
One of the biggest benefits is that the cord blood banking is beneficial for other members of the family – as long as the blood group matches. This could help if a sibling has a health problem that needs the donation or you or your partner needs it. This allows you to have the chance to keep your family together and so your child does not need to go through a difficult period of mourning.
However, it is important to note that only a handful of diseases are being treated with blood that has been stored from the cord blood. These include sickle cell anemia and leukemia. They are not the most common illnesses that could affect your family or your baby.
If you do find that you do not need it in the future, you can donate the cord blood so someone else will be able to benefit from it. Of course, then you will have to think about the cost of the banking and different ways that your baby could benefit from the money.
Donating the Blood
It is also possible to make the decision to donate the cord blood instead of banking it. This is something that the hospital can help you with at the time of your birth. The benefit of donating your blood is that it will cost you no extra money and you will help someone else who already needs the blood.
However, you will not have it for future use and may find that you have to put your child or another family member on a waiting list for a transplant instead of having access to the cord blood. This is something that many families battle with.
Need to Decide Before the Birth
You will need to make the decision before the birth of your baby. There are a handful of companies that store cord blood and will send you the kits to be able to take the cord and store it to be able to send back to the company. However, the kits have to be used when your baby is born, so you will need to make the decision early on. This is something that you need to talk to your partner about to decide whether this is something the two of you would like to do.
You will need to think about the costs. You need to spend money for the collection kit and then spend money each year for the storing of the cord blood. This money is spent on something that could possibly save your child or a member of the family, but the money could be spent in ways that will definitely help your child, such as education.
There are many different companies offering the ability to store the cord blood. It is worth looking into each one as the prices will differ, the requirements will differ and the benefits change. For some, the cost is well worth having something just in case they need it. Having the peace of mind knowing that there is something to hand that could possibly save your child’s life. While the chances of developing one of the illnesses are low, there is always that worry of ‘what if’ and cord banking will help overcome those worries.
Elle Liban is a full time freelance writer and has experience in popular cord blood. She likes to ensure parents know everything about umbilical cord blood storing before making a decision to do the best thing for their family.