A common belief in regards to alcohol and pregnancy is that one glass of (red) wine a day is okay, or even healthy, for mom and baby. As far as the CDC and US Surgeon General are concerned, this is absolutely not true.
The American Academy of Pediatrics agrees, saying that even small amounts of drinking can lead to stillbirth, miscarriage, SIDS or prematurity. This is because, as with everything else you ingest, when you drink alcohol, your baby does too. Your developing baby cannot metabolize alcohol, and their tiny body will have the same blood alcohol level as you.
One drink a day can increase your child’s risk for low birth weight, problems with speech, learning, attention span, language, and hyperactivity. Research even shows that pregnant women who had as little as one drink a week had children who had more aggressive and delinquent behaviors (as opposed to mothers who did not drink at all while pregnant).
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders and the most severe, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome are two major concerns with mothers who drink during gestation. These disorders describe a wide range of alcohol related issues (of the baby); including abnormal facial features, problems with the central nervous system, and impaired growth (pre and post birth).
Drinking post-birth can even be unsafe if you plan to breast feed your baby. Alcohol is passed freely from mother to baby through her breast milk. It takes a 120 pound woman roughly 13 hours to metabolize one alcoholic drink; this means your baby is also consuming the alcohol if you breastfeed during this time period.
A safe alternative, should you decide to drink and do not want to compromise your milk supply, or become engorged, would be to breast pump, and discard of the milk possibly tainted with alcohol.Breast pumps can be expensive when purchased out of pocket- Aeroflow Breastpumps offers a wide variety of pumps and you may be able to receive yours at little-to-no cost through insurance.
Most insurance companies cover the cost of breast pumps at little or no cost to patients (per the Affordable Care Act). To find out if you qualify for a free pump, simply complete our Qualify Through Insurance form. Once submitted, one of our Breastpump Specialists will work with your insurance company and healthcare provider to determine your coverage and will contact you within 3-5 business days to discuss your breast pump options. You can also contact our Breastpump Department directly at 844-867-9890.
Consuming alcohol while pregnant or breastfeeding is just not safe for your growing addition. For more information, or if you have questions or concerns, consult your physician or midwife.