Finally, it’s happening! You must be so excited to welcome a little one into your family. And now you must be waiting to give them a hospitable environment in your womb for nine months.
As you do so, remember that it’s important for you to be healthy and happening so your baby can be healthy too. For that, you must eat well, sleep well, and keep your distance from regular alcohol consumption.
Yes, you read that right. Alcohol consumption during pregnancy can cause developmental disabilities, birth defects, and other issues in babies. It can result in Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders, miscarriages, prematurities, etc.
So, it’s strongly recommended not to drink alcohol during pregnancy. There are several other effects related to alcohol and pregnancy. Read through here:
What Happens When You Drink Alcohol During Pregnancy?
Drinking alcohol during pregnancy has negative effects on the baby. When you consume alcohol while pregnant, it travels from your bloodstream to different organs of the baby, including the liver.
However, during the initial stages of pregnancy, a baby’s liver does not develop enough to process the alcohol. Your repeated consumption can eventually affect your baby and cause serious issues with its development.
It can also cause problems after the birth of your baby. So, you must stay skeptical of your alcohol consumption during pregnancy, just as you stay sceptical when it comes to your baby’s first food.
Effects of Alcohol on Pregnancy
Some of the symptoms that you may notice after alcohol consumption (during pregnancy) are related to Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. This includes:
- Behavioural problems
- Attention problems
- Heart defects
- Poor growth/muscle tone
- Balance and movement problem
- Learning issues
- Thinking/speech defect
- Change in facial shape, etc.
In extreme cases, the child may suffer from complications like cerebral palsy. Similarly, you, as the mother, may suffer from premature birth or pregnancy loss.
Is Light Drinking Unsafe for the Baby?
When it comes to alcohol and pregnancy, there is still a lot of debate among doctors. While some healthcare professionals restrict their patients from drinking alcohol completely, others allow occasional light drinking to the patients.
As per a study of 5928 pregnant women, about 19% consumed alcohol occasionally. Meanwhile, 20% of them reported low alcohol consumption, and 15% reported consuming more than seven drinks weekly.
In all these cases, the defects and abnormalities were the same. Similarly, there are several other studies which show little evidence between light drinking and pregnancy defects. So, it’s still confusing. But, it’s best to avoid any form of drinking during pregnancy.
Safe Levels of Alcohol in Pregnancy
One of the most common questions among pregnant women is what are the safe levels of alcohol during pregnancy? The answer is none.
At present, there is no safe amount of alcohol that’s ideal for consumption during pregnancy. Similarly, there is no safe time during pregnancy when you can consume alcohol. As for alcohol varieties, all types of alcohol, including wines and beers, are harmful to the baby. So, if you are wondering about the connection between wine and pregnancy, it’s just like any other alcohol variety.
Alcohol, when consumed during the first three months of the pregnancy, can cause abnormal facial features. However, the child may suffer from central nervous problems and growth issues if the mother consumes alcohol during any month of the pregnancy. So, if you want your baby to be healthy, you must not drink alcohol at all.
How to Stop Drinking Alcohol During Pregnancy?
Now that you understand the consequences of drinking alcohol during pregnancy let’s learn some of the ways by which you can stop consuming it. First things first, you must have the willpower to avoid alcoholic drinks. It could be tough at first, especially if you are too much dependent on it.
But once you find out about your pregnancy, it’s recommended to discuss with your healthcare professional about your drinking routine. Don’t try to stop alcohol suddenly, or it may cause alcohol withdrawal symptoms.
Instead, discuss things right away with your doctor to handle the situation. They wouldn’t judge you and will certainly offer you the help that you need. However, make sure to do your research and learn how to find the best gynaecologist before finalising your doctor.
Besides that, here are some other tips that you can follow to stop alcohol during pregnancy:
Switch to Alcohol-free Choices
When it comes to alcohol-free drink choices, most of you must be thinking about fruit juices and sugary drinks. While that’s an option, you can also try wines and beer without alcohol. Make sure to satisfy your unhealthy cravings with healthy options.
Additionally, check the ABV content in the drinks. Drinks with trace alcohol may be consumed after a doctor consultation, and it may not have extreme effects on the baby. But again, it’s best to discuss everything with your healthcare professional before adding to the diet.
Whenever you get the urge to drink alcohol, try to engage your mind in something else. For example, you can go for a quick walk or catch a movie with your partner. You can also divert your mind to board games, painting, or music.
Hangout with the Right People
Another effective way to stop your alcohol consumption during pregnancy is by hanging out with people who will help you to stop the same. Tell them how you need their support to win this battle against alcohol and give your baby a healthy life. Meanwhile, request them not to drink in front of you, as it can stimulate the urge.
Avoid Risky Places
It’s best to avoid places like bars and discs until you give birth to your baby. Rather, you can go to cafes and restaurants for a hearty meal. Similarly, if you are invited to a party, do not go near the drinks table. You must also hang out with people who don’t drink. That way, you will stay away from any sort of alcoholic consumption.
Lastly, you can indulge in different yoga asanas to recover from alcohol dependency and heavy drinking. There are many yoga poses that can boost your willpower and give you momentary peace, like Vajrasana. However, before doing any yoga, you must talk with your doctor and instructor. Don’t include anything in your regime without expert consultation.
Should you consume alcohol during pregnancy? Not really. It’s best to avoid drinking alcohol during any time of pregnancy as it can have negative effects on your child.