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Pregnancy and Alcohol - a Dangerous Cocktail Warns BMA Scotland

binge-drinking in Europe and a high rate of teenage pregnancies. More Scottish women exceed the recommended limits for alcohol consumption than their counterparts in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Pregnant women should try to reduce their alcohol intake, or better still give up completely. It is, however, important, that women who drank alcohol before realising they were pregnant do not panic.

We need to raise awareness of the emerging evidence on FASD among healthcare professionals and provide training and guidance on how to identify these disorders so that children are diagnosed quickly and get the help they need. Early intervention is crucial in decreasing the risk of additional problems commonly found in individuals affected by these disorders. These include mental health problems, disrupted school experience, alcohol and drug addictions.

Healthcare professionals also need to find ways to get the message across to expectant mothers that consuming alcohol can cause irreversible harm to their unborn child. People need to be given the right information so that they can act responsibly and save their children from preventable life-long disabilities.

According To Dr Bruce Ritson, chair of Scottish Health Action on Alcohol Problems (SHAAP) said today that he supported the BMA's call for more research: "Many mothers are aware that drinking during pregnancy is hazardous and behave responsibly once they know they are pregnant. A balanced approach is sensible but we do not wish to raise anxiety in mothers who may be worried about their past drinking. It is most important that mothers who are drinking in a potentially damaging way can obtain considered and non-judgemental advice."


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TAG: Pregnancy and Alcohol Dangerous Cocktail Warns BMA Scotland

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