Births increase at local hospitals nine months after ice storm - - No One Gets You Closer

Births increase at local hospitals nine months after ice storm

GRAYSON COUNTY -- It's hard to believe with all the heat we've had lately that Grayson County was covered with ice in December.

It seems like so long ago but now it's top of mind again for many for reasons that can only be described by human nature.

For weeks in December, you may have ended up pushing your car out of a ditch if you braved the aftermath of the ice storm.

Slick streets and sidewalks are the reason most stayed indoors which may explain a new -- much warmer trend -- nine months later.

"You see a baby being born constantly on Facebook so there's something that happened nine months ago," new grandmother Suzette Jewel said.

At Texoma Medical Center in Denison, doctors say births are up 20%. "Typically, the hospital here delivers about 100 babies a month and it's been about 120," Dr. Todd Cutler said.

At Texas Health Presbyterian WNJ in Sherman, doctors saw a 27% spike in the birth rate in July compared to July of 2013. "We are definitely seeing an upswing in the number of deliveries and people coming in to have babies and being due," Dr. Teresa Rockhill said.

"It doesn't surprise me. There's four people at my work that are having babies in two weeks," Ryan Jewel said. "I guess nobody could get out there's nothing else to do." Jewel and his wife had their first child this week.

Of course, there's no way to know for sure the exact correlation between the ice storm and a birth rate increase nine months later. A representative for TMC says it may also be attributed to more mothers choosing to come to the hospital to give birth.

"All you can do is look back at the calendar and see where the correlation exists," Dr. Rockhill said.

But doctors say the phenomenon doesn't just happen nine months after cold weather spells.

They say birth rates also increase nine months after transitional times, like holidays. "Or when kids go back to school or those kinds of times where there are big changes occurring in people's lives," Dr. Cutler said.

That could mean more families may soon be saving a due date nine months from now.

Both hospitals say they're also expecting more babies than normal in September as well.