We’ve all heard the saying, “a little bit won’t hurt you” – a little bit of chocolate, a little bit of ice cream, a little bit of potato. But, when it comes to alcohol when pregnant, even a little bit can hurt your unborn child.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, “There is no known safe amount of alcohol use during pregnancy or while trying to get pregnant. There is also no safe time during pregnancy to drink.”
With Valentine’s Day this week, a three-day weekend coming up (President’s Day weekend), and Mardi Gras celebrations later this month, alcohol will be a part of special occasions throughout the rest of February. If you are pregnant, suspect you’re pregnant, or trying to get pregnant, experts agree: don’t drink!
What’s the big deal?
So, what’s wrong with drinking alcohol while you’re pregnant or trying to get pregnant? The short answer is, if you drink alcohol, so does your unborn. Alcohol in a mother’s blood passes to her unborn baby through the umbilical cord. Drinking alcohol while pregnant can cause miscarriage, stillbirth, or a variety of physical, behavioral, and intellectual disabilities that can last your child’s lifetime. Such disabilities are called fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASDs). And, it doesn’t matter the type of alcohol a woman consumes: mixed drinks, straight whiskey, beer, and even wine can and do affect an unborn baby.
More than ten years ago, the then-U.S. Surgeon General issued an advisory regarding pregnancy and alcohol. He said, in part, that no amount of alcohol can be considered safe during pregnancy and that alcohol can damage an unborn child at any stage of pregnancy, even before a woman knows she’s pregnant. That’s a good reason to see a health care professional as soon as possible if you suspect you’re pregnant. True Care Women’s Resource Center offers free pregnancy testing and ultrasound confirmation of pregnancy by medical professionals.
Having a difficult time abstaining from alcohol?
It can be difficult to not drink. There are many organizations in Casper that can help a person address alcohol-related issues. If you’re pregnant or suspect you’re pregnant and having a hard time quitting the consumption of alcohol, consider contacting one of the following Casper organizations for help:
- 12-24 Club: http://www.1224club.org/
- Alcoholics Anonymous: http://www.aa.org/
- Central Wyoming Counseling Center: https://www.cwcc.us/
- Recovery Wyoming: http://www.wyomingrecovery.com/
- Celebrate Recovery: http://www.hpcc.church/CR
You might also visit the online Alcohol Rehab Guide: https://www.alcoholrehabguide.org/
If you or someone you know is pregnant and drinking alcohol, the best advice is to stop now. And, if stopping is difficult, seek help – because the health and welfare of two lives is at stake: yours and your unborn child’s.
Experiencing an unplanned pregnancy?
If you need to confirm an unplanned pregnancy, contact True Care’s Scheduling Line to set up your free appointment. We can also provide you with a Personalized Resource List, giving you information on various agencies and organizations in Casper that can help you with a variety of needs, including alcohol-related issues. Call or text 307-215-9684 to set up your appointment today.