Cavs Guard J.R. Smith’s social media posts spark discussion about premature birth

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CLEVELAND, Ohio – A family's experience with premature birth, shared in a touching social media video post.

The couple announced to the world that their baby daughter Dakota was born at just 21 weeks, five months before her due date.

"We had her five months early. She's five days old today, her name is Dakota and she weighs one pound," said Cavs guard J.R. Smiths’ wife Jewel.

Mrs. Smith said she wanted to make this private matter public, because she knows they’re not the only family going through this.

According to the CDC, in 2015, about 1 out of 10 babies was born too early in the United States…before the 37 weeks of pregnancy have been completed.

Dr. Mary Elaine Patrinos, a neonatologist at Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital in Cleveland says, "Every organ system is immature. So the brain development, the eye development, the lung development, the gut development, the kidney development."

She adds the prognosis for babies born at 21 weeks " still very guarded and I would say poor."

At 19-months-old, little Easton Urbach is taking his first steps.

Delivering at just 23-weeks into her pregnancy, Tiffany Urbach says Eason was born June 4th, 2015 at just one-pound, eleven ounces.

She says those months inside the neo natal intensive care unit were pure horror.

"When he was born, we actually were told to call all our family members, because they said he probably was not gonna make it," said Urbach.

With some minor developmental setbacks, Easton is expected to fully develop into a “normal child.”

Tiffany says she knows exactly what the Smiths are dealing with. “I know exactly where they're coming from and I think it's good that they're asking for prayers. And that's the other thing, pray, pray, pray. I think that's all we did."

Experts don't know why some babies are born too soon, even though a woman does everything right during pregnancy.

Risk factors can include a woman's pregnancy history, including short time in between pregnancies or delivering a pre-term baby in the past; social characteristics, like women over the age of 35, and alcohol or tobacco use.

The Smith family hasn't given an update on their baby's condition in recent days, but are still asking for prayers, something the Urbach family says definitely worked for them.