ALCOHOL AND PREGNANCY: CAN I DRINK ALCOHOL WHILE PREGNANT?

Most women understand that drinking alcohol during pregnancy can cause serious mental and physical damage to their fetus. But some women still drink, maybe they choose red wine because they feel it might even have health benefits? Here is the truth: even light drinking of alcohol during pregnancy may have an effect on your unborn child. There is no exact guide as to precisely how much alcohol you may or may not drink when pregnant so the safest way is to avoid it altogether. Just think about it ~ if you are having a drink, then your unborn fetus is also having a drink in effect.

THE REAL DANGERS OF FETAL ALCOHOL SYNDROME

In the United States alone, there are more than one thousand children born with a condition called "FETAL ALCOHOL SYNDROME". It's a sad fact that fetal alcohol syndrome is one of the most common causes of mental retarding in the US. And it's a condition can that be totally avoided. Fetal alcohol syndrome or FAS damages the central nervous system which effects brain function. Suffers of FAS often have distinctive facial traits including small eyes, a short nose, a small upper head circumference and folds of skin in the corner of the eye. The risk of brain damage increases as the eyes are smaller. They are usually under developed in both weight and height. There is no cure and in some countries, around 7 out of 90 adults with the condition are unable to live independently. Teenage girls, who may be binge drinkers and do not practice self sex, are one of the highest risk categories

AND MORE POTENTIAL EFFECTS OF ALCOHOL AND PREGNANCY

What's more. Thousands of babies are born who might not have fetal alcohol syndrome, but they do have some form of impairment due to alcohol.

THE MESSAGE IS SIMPLE

So the overall message is do not drink while pregnant. Just don't. Why take a risk with your future child? On the other hand, it's too easy to get into a panic if you have had a light drink and you didn't realize you are pregnant. It's unlikely that there will be a problem, unless you continue to drink. So, the moment you realise you are pregnant, cut the alcohol. And yes, that means drinking wine while pregnant too. Don't do it. And that extends to breastfeeding too. I repeat ~ do not drink alcohol while breastfeeding. And don't let anyone pressurize you into it "just one drink" oh "what can it hurt", "I drank when I was pregnant and my baby is perfectly healthy". Do not buckle with this social pressure. Be strong and your baby will thank you for it.