Effects of drinking alcohol during pregnancy
Whether a woman is pregnant or not, one thing is very clear that alcohol has its side effects on body. Heavy consumption of alcohol can cause coordination problem, sleeping disorders, fatigue etc. So, alcohol consumption can prove dangerous to anyone, especially pregnant women.
Some people recommend small amount of alcohol is alright during pregnancy, while others disagree with this recommendation. Doctors say that one should stop drinking alcohol even before one conceives because many women detect their pregnancy late. The correct amount of alcohol consumption during pregnancy is highly controversial.
Many women know that heavy drinking during pregnancy is dangerous but they do not realize that even mild dosage of alcohol can cause physical and mental defects to their baby.
A study shows that placenta has little tolerance to alcohol. When a pregnant woman drinks alcohol, it mixes with the blood, crosses the placenta through blood stream and reaches baby's blood. As we all know, alcohol is a toxin therefore drinking alcohol while pregnant interferes with the proper development of the baby.
During the early stage of pregnancy, that is during the first three or four weeks when child grows rapidly, that is when the heart, central nervous system, eyes, arms, and legs develop, it is advised to avoid drinking alcohol as it can affect the normal development of the child.
Even during the later stages of pregnancy when child's brain develops, drinking alcohol is strictly prohibited as it can damage the organs. If you consume alcohol in this crucial period of development of your baby, you may cause problems to your baby's development.
Heavy alcohol consumption can lead to the death of premature cells of your baby resulting in Fetal Alcohol Spectrum disorders (FASD) or it can also cause miscarriage or premature delivery. Some studies even show that large amount of alcohol during pregnancy can lead to stillbirth.
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum disorders (FASD) is a term associated with a list of possible illness that can occur or be found in the baby whose mother drank alcohol during her pregnancy. During the early stage of pregnancy when the fetus is exposed to alcohol due to mother's drinking habit, it can suffer from birth defects that can be irreversible and child may need special care throughout life.
The following illness may shows that the baby is suffering from fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD)
- Mental retardation
- Learning problem
- Sleeping and breathing problem
- Behavior problem
- Memory problem
- Low birth weight
- Abnormally small or large head
- Poor coordination
The FASD list is long. The best thing is that one can prevent it by controlling one's drinking habit. One must realize that when women consume alcohol during their pregnancy their baby consumes it too. In addition, we all know what problems it can cause to the baby.
Therefore, when it comes to drinking alcohol during pregnancy there is no safe amount or no safe time. One should simply stop drinking.