Alcohol and Pregnancy

By: Maddi Rohrbaugh Section: 3-6,10

Background Information

As we all know, alcohol is not good on the human body. It can make people do things they would not normally do or make stupid decisions. It does not "agree" with the body very well. Alcohol gives people a physical feeling that essentially feels good. However, the good feeling usually does not last. After a vast amount of alcohol intake the person usually gets physically ill. This is most commonly known as a "hangover". Symptoms of hangovers include fatigue, nausea/vomiting, excessive thirst, light/sound sensitivity, headaches, and dizziness.

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (Facial Malformations)

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is most commonly known as FAS. It happens when a pregnant woman consumes alcohol. Often, FAS affects how the child will look once born. These birth defects can be as minor as a lower nasal bridge. However, the child can have more serious birth defects like a cleft palate. Studies have shown that 2 of every 1,000 children that are born, are born with FAS.
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Other defects

If a pregnant woman drinks, there is also a very high risk of the child being born with mental retardation. In fact, the consuming of alcohol while pregnant is the leading cause of mental retardation, today. Also, other serious defects are impaired growth and organ malfunctions.
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Is It Preventable?

People wonder if we can prevent Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. Well, if this disease is from a mother consuming alcohol while pregnant, then of course it is preventable. Granted if the mother has had a problem with alcohol it will be very difficult, but still very possible. There are special programs that are specified to help people with alcohol addictions get past them. No one should ever think this is not preventable or impossible because the are very much not true.
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Well Why do People even Drink While Pregnant?

This one is easy. People usually drink while they are pregnant because they have a lingering addiction. Usually, they had a drinking problem before they got pregnant and it was hard to just let go, like any addiction. However, sometimes people just do not simply care about the child they are carrying. They will say that it's their body and their baby so they should be allowed to consume alcohol if they wish. It's very sad that people feel this way but some do.

What Should You Do?

There is really no right way to approach a woman that is pregnant drinking alcohol. Consuming alcohol while pregnant is inhumane, and it could spark a very heated argument. If you decide to approach a pregnant woman drinking, try saying it in a more concerned way, the woman will likely appreciate the concern, but sadly, might continue to drink. Sadly, you cannot control other people's decisions on what they put into their and their child's bodies. Knowing that you tried should make you feel better in some shape or form.