Alcohol and motherhood in questions

Alcohol and motherhood in questions
Alcohol and motherhood in questions

We know that pregnancy, although wonderful, is accompanied by several small inconveniences, including having to temporarily put a cross on sushi, tartare, soft cheeses… and alcohol, a subject that often triggers many passions!


While some women categorically refuse to drink throughout their pregnancy and even avoid recipes that contain alcohol, some allow themselves to dip their lips in their partner's glass on occasion or drink small amounts from time to time. We therefore decided to conduct our investigation, in collaboration with Éduc’alcool, and to survey our community in order to gather opinions on the matter. Thus, over the past few months, we have launched vox pops on our social networks and we have collected a number of comments, the summary of which is presented here. Do you find yourself in these opinions?

In your opinion, should pregnant women reduce their alcohol consumption, stop drinking completely or not change their habits?

  • Rébecca Boudreau, on FB, tells us: “9 months in a life is nothing for a mom,but so much for this little being in the making tolerance0. »
  • Steph Schmitt From Tomi on FB tells us, “9 months is 1% of your life time. Nothing more to say…”
  • Émilie Dion, on FB, tells us: “Zero alcohol! 9 months of deprivation is nothing for the well-being of my baby! Having a child means, in many ways, making sacrifices. And it starts during pregnancy. »
  • Audrey Cholette Gélinas, on FB, tells us: "To have two perfectly he althy children, during my first pregnancy I had a drink that I sipped all evening at the Holidays, and it happened to me to take a sip (I would say more of a dip) when I was with my friends and they were having cocktails. During my second pregnancy, I twice had a drink (cocktail) too. We agree that I didn't abuse it and my glasses were all cocktails in which I hardly put any alcohol and which I filled with soft drink/juice. We agree that I did not abuse with alcohol. I know it's not advised, but I think you just need to dose it right and not overdo it. »

Éduc'alcool's answer: Research does not make it possible to determine a minimum threshold of consumption that is entirely safe for the development of the future baby, even if there is no formal proof that having a drink with occasion has a harmful effect on the fetus. In addition, the risks of spontaneous abortions, malformations, growth retardation and mental deficiencyincrease with the amount of alcohol ingested by the mother on the same occasion and with the frequency of its consumption. The scientific community believes that avoiding alcohol consumption remains the safest choice. Finally, you can always see your doctor to discuss your use or to get help if you need it.

It is said that millions of women have had an occasional drink of alcohol during their pregnancy and it has had no consequences. What do you think?

  • Agnieszka Koza, on FB, tells us: “It is true, but others have had serious consequences. Would the responsible new mother put alcohol in the newborn's bottle??? So why does she take it pregnant? It's the same!!! »
  • Mélanie Boulet, on FB, tells us: “Just no. I agree this is playing with fire. It's just nine months. »
  • Gégé Haill, on FB, tells us: “It's clearly playing with fire. Everyone has their own choices, except that in this situation, it's someone who didn't ask for anything and who will pay the consequences if there are consequences. »
  • Maryse Lahaie, on FB, tells us: “Me, you are going to laugh, but during my pregnancy, wine had the same effect on me as garlic toast. If anyone took wine around me, I found that they stank as much as if they had eaten garlic. If I took a single sip of wine, the feeling passed. So, I only took sips once in a while, because we're not big drinkers. »

Answer from Éduc’alcool: By consuming a relatively large quantity of alcohol and frequently, pregnant women expose themselves to giving birth to children with certain specific problems. These conditions are sometimes referred to as Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder. They can present as stunted growth, intellectual deficit, heart defects, an abnormally small head, or other facial and skeletal abnormalities. Occasional heavy drinking also carries some similar dangers.

If you had an occasional drink during pregnancy, is it very serious for the unborn child and should you be worried about it?

  • Isabelle L'Heureux, responding to our newsletter, tells us: "I don't believe in making the mothers who did it feel guilty, and it's never too late to do well. If they are worried, I would advise them to talk to their doctor. »
  • Jessica Demers, responding to our weekend newsletter, tells us: "I didn't know I was pregnant until my second trimester and I drank alcohol. Worry gnawed at me until my son was born. Luckily he's he althy, but I wouldn't take a chance on another pregnancy. »
  • Joanie Simard, answering our pregnancy newsletter, tells us: "I think it depends on the context, but if you are not able to stop using for 9 months, maybe you have asubstance abuse problem and that you should discuss it with your doctor. withoutjudgments”
  • Sylvana Deramo, answering our pregnancy newsletter, tells us: "I would say trust your judgment and, above all, if it's already done, you shouldn't worry too much and stress yourself out, because it will only make the situation worse. »

Éduc'alcool's response: No. The risk of harm to the fetus is greatly reduced when consumption is limited to an occasional drink. The toxic effect of alcohol is proportional to the quantity ingested and the frequency of consumption. This is why we believe that avoiding consumption throughout pregnancy remains the safest choice. Moreover, alcohol is never the only factor intervening in the development of the baby. The he alth of the parents, their background, their lifestyle, the mother's diet, external pollutants, the use of tobacco and drugs during pregnancy as well as socioeconomic conditions influence the course of things.

It is sometimes said that pregnant women are tired of being told what to do. Do you think that should stop us from giving them advice?

  • Jessica Jodoin, on our FB page, tells us: “There's a way to pass on information without it sounding like tiring and intrusive advice. »
  • Sophie Stassinopoulos, on our FB page, tells us: “You can give advice by taking example from your personal experience or by discreetly sending electronic documentation. »
  • Stephanie Pellerin, on our FB page, tells us: "Me, when it affects the he alth of babies, I'm never afraid to offend anyone. »

Mom's advice for life: When discussing the he alth of mother and baby, we shouldn't hold back from giving constructive feedback.

What do you think should be said to a pregnant woman who drinks alcohol during her pregnancy?

  • Marie-Hélène Vigeant, on our FB page, tells us: “Well, believe it or not, I was getting intense achalance during my pregnancies because I refused to drink… At my first, I I took 1 sip of sparkling wine to celebrate my 35th birthday and I felt judged… I was told: ''There's nothing to prove that taking a little is bad for the baby.'' Maybe, but there's nothing that says it's good either, so…”
  • Christine Cricri Harvey-Cléroux, on our FB page, tells us: “Live and let live. There's a difference between having a drink for an occasion and tossing a brush. By the way, you are also supposed to stop driving in the third trimester as recommended…”
  • Angele Mekkelholt, on our FB page, tells us: "I would say to her: 'Have you ever tried non-alcoholic cocktails and wines? Since I discovered them at Mère Hélène and at the SAQ, I have it in stock all the time and that's what I take. Do you want a drink?"
  • Alicia Ouellet, on our FB page, tells us: “Moderation… as long as she drinks one or two drinks once a week (like) there's no risk. As long asthe mother is not an alcoholic and she does not make big slips… the baby is in no danger. As long as it's not regular… even still… some French women drink a glass of wine with every meal, even when pregnant, and babies are fine. Do not turn on the top either … it is the excess that must be avoided. »

Mom's advice for life: With delicacy, we can always suggest that the mother try cocktails or non-alcoholic beers. There are nearly 160 mocktail recipes on the website. If you feel a lack of openness, you can always try to send information by email or messenger.

In your opinion, at what stage of pregnancy is alcohol consumption the most harmful for the unborn child?

  • Alizee_lil, on our Instagram page, tells us: “The first few weeks are very important. »
  • Han_gi_, on our Instagram page, tells us: "We don't really know, that's why it's not recommended for the whole pregnancy. »
  • Julie Dumouin, answering our newsletter, tells us: “The first trimester is really more at risk, but it is not badly recommended for the whole pregnancy. »
  • Sophie Lafrenière, answering our weekend newsletter, tells us: “The first trimester in my opinion, but don't go crazy. »

Answer from Éduc’alcool: Alcohol is a toxic substance that passes quickly from the blood of the mother to that of the baby. Since the organs of the fetus are in full development, they areparticularly vulnerable to any toxic product, especially during the first three months of pregnancy. A woman who wants to conceive has every interest in changing her lifestyle as soon as she plans to become pregnant (reducing her alcohol consumption, avoiding any other toxic substance, watching her diet, etc.).

Do you find that society generally helps pregnant women to stop drinking alcohol during pregnancy or rather encourages them to drink?

  • Kharen Trebla, on our FB page, tells us: “I don't believe that it is the role of society to manage individuals. »
  • Stefania, responding to our pregnancy newsletter, tells us: “I find that there is a lot of information on this subject circulating, so I would say that society helps. »
  • Cinthia Pelletier, answering our pregnancy newsletter, tells us: "In the doctor's office, it's plastered with images that show the harmful effects of fetal alcoholism, so yes, I find that society pass the necessary messages. »
  • Jessica Demers, answering our pregnancy newsletter, said: "In my first pregnancy, in 2002, I would tell you that there was not as much information and options as when I was pregnant. second pregnancy in 2014.”

Answer from Mom for Life: Today, we consider that a lot of information and awareness campaigns exist on this subject.

Should you completely stop drinking alcohol if you are breastfeeding your child?

  • Vanessa Bonato, inresponding to our newsletter, tells us: "Personally, I haven't used, but I don't think it's totally forbidden? »
  • Camille St-Aman, answering our weekend newsletter, tells us: “There is a whole procedure to follow… I found it too complicated, so I simply did not use. »
  • Laurence Desrosiers, answering our pregnancy newsletter, tells us: "I love good wine too much, so after being deprived for 9 months, I pumped my milk and drank wine during my breastfeeding. »
  • Mélanie Dallaire, answering our pregnancy newsletter, tells us: "I don't really know what to answer to this question… For me, it was easy since I don't drink, but my sister drank while breastfeeding and I didn't feel very ill, because she seemed to know what she was doing. There was a whole method of pumping before and after! »

Answer from Éduc'alcool: Any woman who breastfeeds must think about her well-being and that of her infant. A balanced diet and rest are essential. In addition, she should avoid consuming alcohol while breastfeeding, as the child will absorb alcohol during her meal. Breastfeeding women can afford to drink moderately on occasion (no more than two glasses) by allowing the necessary time to elapse between consumption and breastfeeding; it takes almost two hours to eliminate a glass of alcohol. Those who opt for mixed breastfeeding will be able to express milk in advance and replace the feed according to consumption with abottle.

How do you react when you see a pregnant woman drinking alcohol?

  • Annie Lemieux, on our FB page, tells us: “Live and let live. »
  • MH Mel, on our FB page, tells us: “Very irresponsible, it's just a drink and it's not essential. »
  • Sylvie Bernard, answering on our FB page, tells us: "I'm judging her and I'm very unwell, but I'm not doing anything. »
  • Jessica Demers, answering our newsletter, says: "It's her life, so I wouldn't say anything, but I couldn't help but feel sorry for the little baby. »

Mom's advice for life: Always without judgement, you can always give your opinion by speaking to the "I".

Do spouses have a say in their pregnant wife's decision whether or not to drink alcohol?

  • Marie-Eve Couture, on our FB page, tells us: “As a pregnant woman should abstain from alcohol, I think the dad should help her. That is, don't insist that she take it if he or his friends take it in her presence, and remind her that it's not a good idea if she was tempted to take it. »
  • Solange Lecas, on our FB page, tells us: “It's obvious!!!!! A dad must protect his child! »
  • Marie Cormier, on our FB page, tells us: "Yes, but personally, pregnant, you're not supposed to drink -.-"
  • Catherine Poirier, answering our newsletter, tells us: "Honestly, a child is made for two, and if thespouse has trouble quitting, maybe the spouse could commit to quitting too? »

Mom's advice for life: It's always good for a pregnant woman to have the opinion of her spouse. While trying to put themselves in each other's shoes, it is important that both parents are en titled to their opinions.

Do you believe that a woman should stop drinking alcohol from the moment she is in a position to get pregnant or only from the moment she becomes pregnant?

  • Allison Elyana Maréchal, on our FB page, tells us: “From the moment I learned of my pregnancies, it was zero alcohol. For my second pregnancy, it was different, because we were in PMA, so from the first day of the protocol I no longer took a drop of alcohol. »
  • Carole-Ann Paul, on our FB page, tells us: "In theory, however, it's better to slack alcohol when you're trying to get pregnant because it affects hormones and fertility. But hey… There are people who do everything to the letter and for whom it will take 4 years to catch up. »
  • Audrée Samson, on our FB page, tells us: “I stopped drinking when we started trying each other! »

Answer from Éduc'alcool: It's never too late to ensure optimal fetal development by reducing your alcohol consumption or, even better, by avoiding alcohol consumption if you want to make an even more choice sure. So if you've had a drink or two on occasion, you don't have toworry. But if you are in the habit of consuming more than four drinks per occasion or if you have any concerns, it would be best to speak to your doctor.

What do you think about the statement that a woman's decision whether or not to drink alcohol is a personal matter that is up to her and no one else?

  • Valiris Lefebvre, on our FB page, tells us: “If she is in a relationship, it is in a relationship that it is decided, but knowing the risks, why drink pregnant????? »
  • Madison Simone, answering our pregnancy newsletter, tells us: "I believe that the woman's body belongs to her, but precisely, we are talking about the life of another being, not just her own, even if it is a difficult question. »

In short, opinions are multiple and opinions differ from one person to another, but as being well informed is always the key to wise and calm decisions, do not hesitate to take a look at the Éduc'alcool website for more information. Psst! You will also find tasty non-alcoholic cocktail recipes on the website to treat yourself without having to worry!

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