What is a cleft?
A cleft occurs when certain body parts and structures do not fuse together during pregnancy. It can involve the lip and/or the roof of the mouth.
1 in 700 babies are born with a cleft lip and/or palate globally. Clefts can cause lifelong difficulties in eating, breathing, hearing, and speaking.
No one knows exactly what causes cleft lips or palates to form, but whatever the cause, it is not your fault if your baby has a cleft. Experts agree that there are many factors that might cause someone to be born with a cleft, and we can't always know why one person was born with one and another wasn't.
About Smile Train
Smile Train is an international charity that provides 100%-free cleft surgery and other forms of essential care to children in developing countries. Our sustainable model empowers local doctors to provide much-needed cleft care in their own communities, transforming the lives of tens of thousands of patients every year.