Alcohol use during pregnancy
There is no safe time, no safe amount, no safe kind of alcohol to drink during pregnancy.
Q: How much alcohol is safe to drink during pregnancy?
A: We don’t know. The fact is, effects have been seen even with small amounts of alcohol intake during pregnancy. Every woman and every pregnancy will respond differently to alcohol. There is no safe time during pregnancy to drink and there is no safe amount or type of alcohol during pregnancy. The only way to prevent the effects of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) is to avoid alcohol use if you are pregnant or not using a reliable method of birth control.
Q: Is there a safe time during pregnancy to drink alcohol? Like in the first or last 3-months?
A: As a fetus develops, the use of alcohol can cause significant problems such as brain damage and even death. During a pregnancy there are critical periods for development for each of the bodies organs and limbs. However, since the brain continues to develop through out the entire 9 months (and even after birth), there is no safe time during pregnancy to drink alcohol.
Q: How can drinking alcohol affect my baby?
A: Aside from the risk of severe intellectual disability, significant physical birth defects can be attributed to alcohol use during pregnancy. Later on in his or her childhood, children whose mothers drank during pregnancy can have difficulty learning, and behavioral and social problems.
Q: But don’t you have to drink a lot of alcohol in order to hurt your child? I don’t get drunk, but I do like to have a glass or two with dinner.
A: Women who binge drink are at greater risk of having a child with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS). FAS is a type of intellectual disability with accompanying facial features (thin upper lip, flat mid face, small head and ears). However, even small amounts of alcohol can damage the brain of a developing fetus and lead to a Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD). Children with FASD are often undiagnosed and can experience a broad range of behavioral and neurological disabilities including: attention deficit, learning disabilities, problems with reasoning and judgment, hyperactivity and lack appreciation for logical consequences for their actions.
Q: Where can I get more information?
A: You can watch our curriculum here.
Or check out any of the following resources:
YouTUBE Video by the Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Support Network