May 15, 2014 5:36 PM by Meteorologist Valerie Abati
New research is showing that the stress of hurricanes can be devastating to babies in the womb. During and after hurricanes Katrina and Rita, evidence shows that half of all stillbirths in the areas hit were a result of the storm.
Researchers at Colorado State University and the University of Maryland looked at data on housing damage estimates after the hurricanes. They compared this to the number of stillbirths during that time. Where there was up to 50 percent home damage, there was a 40 percent increased risk for stillbirths. If more than 50 percent of the home were damaged the risk doubled.
Experts say that it's due to stress. Major storms cause depression and trauma which has been linked to increased stillbirth risk.
Hurricane season will starts this year June 1st.
- Meteorologist Valerie Abati