Supporting alcohol-free pregnancies
We can all support someone’s decision to have an alcohol-free pregnancy – whether it is through planning social events without alcohol, providing plenty of alcohol-free alternatives, or joining them in going alcohol-free.
Many people stop drinking alcohol when they are pregnant or planning a pregnancy. This is because any alcohol consumed passes directly to the developing baby and can damage the baby’s brain, body and organs.
Alcohol can also affect fertility, increase the time it takes to get pregnant, and increase the risk of miscarriage, stillbirth and premature birth. That’s why the moment someone starts trying to get pregnant is the moment to stop drinking alcohol.
Social relationships are especially important during major life transitions like pregnancy, and the support of partners, family and friends can really help. Learn how you can support your loved one or friend’s decision to have an alcohol-free pregnancy below.
At a glance: How can I help?
You can be an important source of support by:
- Respecting the decision of your partner, friend or family member to have an alcohol-free pregnancy to keep themselves and their baby healthy.
- Avoiding drinking alcohol around them when you are together.
- Choosing ways of socialising together that don’t involve alcohol, like going to a café, meeting for dinner or unwinding with an activity like going for a walk.
- Backing them up if they are being pressured to drink alcohol in social situations, or letting other family and friends know they are not drinking alcohol and encouraging others to support their alcohol-free pregnancy.
- Offering non-alcoholic drinks or bringing non-alcoholic drinks to social events.
Want to know more about alcohol and pregnancy?
Alcohol at any stage of pregnancy can damage a developing baby’s brain, body and organs and lead to a preventable disability known as Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD). It also increases the risk of miscarriage, stillbirth, babies being small for gestational age, having low birth weight, and being born prematurely.
If you would like more detailed information about alcohol and pregnancy, and why people should make the moment they start trying to get pregnant the moment to stop drinking alcohol, click below.
There is always support available
If your loved one is having trouble stopping drinking, there are supports available.
They can also speak with their doctor, midwife, obstetrician or one of the suggested services linked below.