Drinking & Smoking can increase the baby’s risk of various birth defects. Not only this, it can reduce your fertility, the ability to conceive and is injurious to the health of your baby before, during and even after your baby is born. So the best time to quit is as soon as you and your partner even decide to start trying. It’s easier said than done but understanding that your baby’s organs start growing even before you realise you are pregnant should help a bit!
Let us first understand what happens when you drink while you are pregnant.
- Foetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS)
As you take a sip, the alcohol passes through the placenta and into your growing baby. Since, the baby’s body is still in a developing stage, it takes longer to breakdown the alcohol. This results in high blood alcohol level and restricting the intake of oxygen and essential nutrients. This might cause severe diseases such as heart damage, mental retardation and even behavioral problems like aggression, lack of attention thus resulting in a lower level of IQ, a condition known as Foetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS).
- High risk of miscarriage
So the more you drink, the riskier is gets. Similar are the effects of high caffeine (coffee) consumption. Intake of alcohol even after your baby is born should be avoided. Alcohol passes into your baby through breast milk. This could lead to indigestion and sleeping disorder in the babies.
Now let’s see what happens when you smoke during pregnancy:
- Low birth weight
Smoking has the tendency to double the risk of having a low birth weight which could ultimately result in serious health issues. This will make baby more prone to asthma and stillbirth. Smoking can also induce ectopic pregnancy wherein the embryo is implanted outside the uterus.
- Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)
The risk of placental abruption and your water breaks even before your labour begins. This often results in premature birth and could also increase the risk of having birth defects like clubfoot, cleft lip etc. Babies whose mothers smoked during the whole phase of pregnancy are also likely to die of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
So the next time you pick up a glass or decide to smoke, remember there is ‘no’ safe level and that you are doing it for the two of you!
To get more such pregnancy related information, download Ango Health app today.