Summer is the perfect time for getting out and about, catching up with friends and family, and living it up – especially after a very low key past couple of years.
You might already know that people who are pregnant or planning a pregnancy should not drink any alcohol. But did you know that drinking while trying to get pregnant also carries risks?
The thing is, you might not know that you’re pregnant as soon as it’s happened!
At every stage of pregnancy, any alcohol you drink passes directly to your baby which can cause damage to the baby’s developing brain, body and organs.
It can also increase the risk of your baby developing Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD), a lifelong and entirely preventable developmental disability.
We all have a role to play in supporting alcohol-free pregnancies, and so to make it easier, we’ve prepared some handy tips for you and your support network:
What you can do
* Do a little bit of research to find your favourite mocktails, so you know what to order when you go up to the bar.
* Switch to soda water with a slice of lime, so that nobody pesters you with why you’re not drinking! (You might not be ready to talk about it)
* If you’re not yet ready or comfortable to talk about it, prepare some set answers, if people do pester you about it – eg “I’m just not feeling it today” or “I’ve had a headache since this morning!”.
What your partner, friends or family can do
* Avoid drinking alcohol around you
* Choose ways of hanging out that don’t involve alcohol like lunch at a café or going for a walk
* Offer non-alcoholic drinks if you’re hosting a party, or bring non-alcoholic drinks to social events
If you drank alcohol before you knew you were pregnant and are concerned, or if you are having trouble stopping drinking, you can talk to your doctor, midwife or obstetrician.
Visit www.everymomentmatters.org.au for more information and to get support.