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Folic Acid & Preventing Down Syndrome
I've read recently an article online that taking folic acid prior to conception can help prevent DS.

Now, I know that DS cannot be prevented, and the possibility of having a child with DS increases with a woman's age.
However, this articles was emphasizing on folic acid as a vitamin and almost calling it a "miracle vitamin," by saying that if a woman takes it prior to conception that it has a great deal of positive and helpful effects.

It focused on women with no family history of DS, as it did say that in such cases you can't really prevent what might be hereditary.

What I wanted to know was, how long BEFORE conception should a woman take it? I know it is recommended that it should start 3 months before conception, but the FDA recommends folic acid should be taken daily. My question is, if you want to get pregnant in three years (for example) would it be okay to take it every day for three years?
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351246 tn?1379685732
Hi!
Yes, folic acid is supposed to reduce the chances of neural tube birth defects. However, how long one needs to take this supplement and in what dose is pretty controversial and differs across geographic region. It would be best to consult your gynecologist and discuss this. Three years is a pretty long time. You can talk to your doctor and probably start folic acid when you plan the baby—may be a month prior to that. Do discuss this with your doctor. Take care!
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Hello,

Thanks so much for your reply! Just curious though - if three years is considered to be a long time, for eaxample, to take folic acid, then why is it recommended as a daily vitamin requirement for women of childbearing years?

Also, I've read that it can also help keep a woman fertile or greatly impact her fertility in a positive way...so, it should or shouldn't be taken daily? Or maybe 3 x a week, on average? (Just want an opinion, I don't hold anything against you, thanks!)
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