Alcohol and pregnancy are a controversial topic. The
fact that large amounts of alcohol are dangerous to the
fetus is beyond doubt. On the other hand, if it is
dangerous to drink small amounts of alcohol during
pregnancy is something that has been intensively debated
for a long time.
Alcohol and pregnancy are a
controversial topic. The fact that large amounts of
alcohol are dangerous to the fetus is beyond doubt. On
the other hand, if it is dangerous to drink small
amounts of alcohol during pregnancy is something that
has been intensively debated for a long time.
What happens to the fetus when drinking alcohol?
Alcohol passes through the placenta, which means that
the alcohol will go into the fetal blood and into the
amniotic fluid surrounding the fetus. Since the fetal
liver is not yet fully developed, it cannot break down
the alcohol effectively. This means that the fetus is
affected more and for longer than the mother by the
Is there any safe level of alcohol consumption?
No, it does not. Recent years' research has shown
that there is no lower limit at which one can safely say
that alcohol is not harmful to the fetus. An American
study from 2001 showed that pregnant women who only
drink a glass of wine or a drink a week were at
increased risk of having children who had behavioral
disorders such as concentration difficulties and
aggressiveness. For more information about pregnancy and maternity fashion, please see BESTAAH.COM maternity t shirts. Another study from the US has shown that
women who drink two drinks a week during pregnancy have
children, who at the age of seven have on average a
worse result than other children on IQ tests.
Studies have shown that the effect of alcohol on
pregnancy is valid throughout pregnancy. Although there
are scientific studies that have not found any harmful
effects of smaller amounts of alcohol during pregnancy,
the research shows that it is not possible to establish
a safe lower limit where consumption is harmless. This
means that you should not drink any alcohol at all
during pregnancy, which is also what the National Board
of Health recommends.
What harm can the child get?
Alcohol consumption during pregnancy leads to an
increased risk of birth defects. These injuries include
growth retardation, deformities that give a divergent
appearance and brain damage. It can also lead to
behavioral disorders and other mental problems. In
addition to birth defects, the risk of miscarriage and
low birth weight in alcohol consumption also increases
Fetal alcohol syndrome
Between 50 and 100 children are born each year in
Sweden with such severe injuries that they are
classified as Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS). FAS is a
combination of mental and physical damage suffered by
the child in fetal life as a result of the mother
drinking alcohol. There is a clear connection between
the amount of alcohol the mother drank during pregnancy
and the extent of the injuries, but it is important to
point out that even small amounts affect the risk of the
baby being injured.
FAS is estimated to occur in six percent of mothers
who are alcoholics and chronically abusing alcohol.
Children with FAS often weigh less than normal. The
lower weight also follows them in the years after birth.
Divergent appearance such as small head size, small
eyes, flat face and a very short upward nose are
characteristic. Organ malformations occur, especially
the heart. The brain is also affected, which usually
results in it being smaller than usual. Many of these
children suffer from mental disabilities. The most
common are hyperactivity, concentration difficulties,
learning difficulties, poor memory and lack of logical
ability. The effects of FAS usually last for the rest of
their lives and result in mental and behavioral
problems. Mental diagnoses such as ADHD and DAMP are
overrepresented among these children compared to the
There is a significantly larger group of children who
have been affected by alcohol damage during fetal life,
but who are not so serious that they meet the criteria
set for FAS. This is called fetal alcohol effects. It is
believed that this group is around ten times the size of
the FAS group, which would mean that 500 to 1,000
children are affected annually. The symptoms these
children exhibit are the same as at FAS, but not as
What happens if you drink before you know you are
There are no studies yet that can prove that it is
dangerous for the child if the mother drinks a single
glass of alcohol during pregnancy, but they have not
been able to show the opposite. The baby's brain and
other organs begin to develop during the third week of
pregnancy and are particularly sensitive at this early
stage. As mentioned, there is no lower amount of alcohol
that has been shown to be harmless during pregnancy.
This also applies during early pregnancy, when organ
development occurs. Therefore, you should not drink
alcohol as soon as you have the slightest suspicion that
you are pregnant - or most preferably avoid alcohol
already when you are planning to become pregnant.