Drinking & Pregnancy: New Miscarriage Warning for Moms

Bad news for women trying to conceive: experts are now saying that drinking alcohol even before conception is dangerous for babies, and that it increases the risk of miscarriage. The UK's Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) updated their official advice for pregnant women to state that "if you are planning a pregnancy, it is advisable not to drink alcohol at all during this time."

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So we already know women shouldn't drink while pregnant, and you're also not supposed to drink after giving birth if you're breastfeeding. But now women can't have alcohol before, either?

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Even more frustrating for moms? The experts say that this affects your partner, too. Heavy drinking (that's defined as more than six drinks per day) by either partner could hurt your chances of conception, and eventually increase the risk of miscarriage. And if a mother drinks during pregnancy, she puts her baby at risk for Fetal Alcohol Disorder Syndrome. Yikes.

Consider this: in the United States, more than half of pregnancies are not intentional. That means all of those unborn babies are at risk just because they were unplanned ... and the parents didn't KNOW to cut the alcohol.

The good news is that your baby is probably going to be fine -- just stop drinking right away and talk to your doctor (if you haven't already) about your drinking habits in the weeks before you conceived and found out you were pregnant.

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The RCOG also says that though "there is no proven safe amount of alcohol that you can drink during pregnancy," one to two drinks after the first trimester don't seem to affect the baby in any negative way. In the United States, though, it's still recommended that women abstain from alcohol altogether during all three trimesters. And honestly? Better safe than sorry on this -- Fetal Alcohol Syndrome can affect a child's growth, central nervous system, and physical features.

Of course, it's every mom-to-be's decision to make for herself. But know the facts and if you're hoping to have a baby soon? Maybe hold off on the wine for now.

Does this news worry you at all? Did you drink heavily before you found out you were pregnant?


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