Hurricane Irene Blows In Baby Boom On The East Coast

It was a strange coincidence and a happy one for many! While Hurricane Irene brought in a frantic scurry for many and really bad news for a few people, it also supposedly brought smiles to a number of mothers, who just delivered their bundle of joy. There was a baby boom in some hospitals on the East coast during the torrid weekend reconfirming people’s belief that a drop in the atmospheric pressure helps bring in labour quicker in pregnant women.

Joy Unbounded!

We would hurry to say that this belief is unfounded and is not scientific. There have been studies aimed at linking early labour with drop in the barometric pressure, but all have been inconclusive. There is just not enough correlation to prove the hypothesis. The rumour still persists.

The Boom

At the Sentara Obici hospital in Suffolk, Virginia, there were a record 15 childbirths that took place between Friday night and Sunday morning in the space of 30 hours or so. This is way greater than the usual rate of three or four a day. Further, New Hanover Regional Medical Center in North Carolina reported a staggering 17 babies during 18 hours from Friday night onto Saturday evening. This hospital sees about 11 to 12 babies a day.

When it came to names, however, Irene didn’t seem to find too much of popularity amongst the parents. Only two girls born at Pitt County Memorial Hospital in Greenville, North Carolina were named Irene’. But this was the wrong place to go, if you wanted to see a baby boom. Pitt County reported a lesser than average number of babied being born.

Here’s wishing all the new mothers and their bundles of joy the very best.

Published by

Debjyoti Bardhan

Is a science geek, currently pursuing some sort of a degree (called a PhD) in Physics at TIFR, Mumbai. An enthusiastic but useless amateur photographer, his most favourite activity is simply lazing around. He is interested in all things interesting and scientific.