If you're sexually active, you need to take a folic acid supplement every day

 Choose below to discover why...

                                                                                                               

Why is this so important to Shine?

Shine is the UK's leading charity for people living with Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus, with around 12,000 members living in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.  We're also one of the only organisations in the UK offering specialist support to parents affected by Anencephaly, a fatal condition where the brain and skull do not fully develop in the womb. Both conditions are potentially preventable, with folic acid supplementation clinically proven to reduce the chances of a Neural Tube Defect (such as Spina Bifida or Anencephaly) developing during pregnancy by up to 70%. 

You can learn more about these life threatening conditions below:

What is spina bifida?

Spina bifida literally means ‘split spine’. A fault in the development of the spinal cord and surrounding bones (vertebrae) leaves a gap or split in the spine. The spinal cord has not formed properly, and may also be damaged.

Learn more about the condition

What is Anencephaly?

Anencephaly is always fatal. It happens during the first 28 days in about 1 in 2,000 UK pregnancies, and occurs when an unborn baby’s brain doesn’t form properly in the womb. 

Learn more about the condition

Don't forget...

  • No contraceptive is 100% effective
  • You will almost definitely not know you are pregnant when the neural tube starts to close at two weeks
  • Take a 400mcg folic acid supplement every day to prevent neural tube defects

Click here for more on how to lower your chances

Join the fight for fortification

Shine are campaigning for the mandatory fortification of flour with folic acid, an initiative proven to reduce neural tube defects such as spina bifida and anencephaly by up to 70% in more than 80 countries across the world.

Find out more

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