CDC warns using alcohol during pregnancy can lead to life long health problems for baby

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – The Centers for Disease Control Prevention sent out a warning to women to be aware of the dangers of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. Research shows alcohol can hurt the baby during any part of the pregnancy, including the first couple of months, when women may not know they’re pregnant.

Research shows alcohol can hurt the baby during any part of the pregnancy, including the first couple of months, when women may not know they’re pregnant.

Dr. Claudia Taboada is a high-risk pregnancy specialist with PinnacleHealth’s Maternal Fetal Medicine Department.

She said it’s a problem that see says often. “We all have patients who will drink during pregnancy and the understand the risks,” said Taboada, “Pregnancy is a choice, and what you do during pregnancy, is a personal decision.”

Taboada says drinking during pregnancy can cause a lot of permanent health issues for children, including brain damage, heart and kidney problems along with low birth weight and growth, but there is still a lot of unknowns.

“With Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, we don’t know how many drinks will cause harm to your baby,” said Taboada, “We can’t say in the first trimester if you have 10 drinks, your baby will be affected or this will happen.”

The CDC is urging women who think they may be pregnant, or are having unprotected sex, to stop drinking alcohol and they are asking health professionals to encourage their patients to use contraception, to prevent a pregnancy.

Dr. Taboada says the most effective step to take, to prevent Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, is for expecting mothers to not drink any alcoholic beverages.


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