New Study Shows Moms Stop Drinking Once They Get Pregnant

By alexa ancheta, Parent Herald March 15, 07:40 pm
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Fetal alcohol syndrome can lead to babies with disability and development problems.
(Photo : Agung Parameswara/Getty Images)

A study by experts at the Vanderbilt University showed that women stopped drinking alcohol once they knew they were pregnant. Of the 5,000 women surveyed, only 6 percent failed to stop drinking alcohol. Those who continued drinking, however, lessened the quantity of their alcohol intake.

Institute for Medicine and Public Health at Vanderbilt deputy director Dr. Katherine Hartmann said the study was not about the safety of alcohol intake during pregnancy. Hartmann was the senior author of the study entitled "Pregnancy Intention and Maternal Alcohol Consumption," as published in Obstetrics & Gynecology.

"We wanted to see what actual women were currently doing. And we were pleasantly surprised about how promptly people changed their alcohol use," Hartmann said. "Women were already self-regulating their alcohol use. Our findings suggested that promoting early pregnancy awareness could prove to be more effective than promoting abstinence from alcohol among all who could conceive."

The study result showed the present message that discouraged fertile women from alcohol intake was unrealistic, according to Parenting. Most women already knew they were pregnant when they missed their period. They should instead be given better access to pregnancy testing at the early stage of pregnancy.

Alcohol consumption among pregnant women can lead to fetal alcohol syndrome. This can produce babies with hearing and vision loss, organ damage, learning difficulties and poor growth, as per Telegraph.

Alcohol-related problems among pregnant women have increased by 37 percent in just three years, from 2010 to 2013. Chief Medical Officer Dame Sally Davies has issued a new guideline that indicated the absence of a safe level of alcohol intake for pregnant women.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported binge drinking among 3.1 percent of pregnant women in the United States, according to New York Daily News. The authorities reminded pregnant women about the possibility of birth defects and disabilities among babies who suffered from fetal alcohol syndrome.

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