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Help for Alcohol Abuse During Pregnancy

Alcohol is one of the most widely abused substances during pregnancy. The effects on the development of the fetus and infant outcomes have all been well studied. Admitting that you need help can be hard but it is the best thing to do during your pregnancy. You may feel ashamed or have doubts about quitting although you are scared at what the effect of alcohol could have on your unborn child. Many people have struggled with this same situation, it’s hard, probably one of the hardest things you’ve ever had to do, however keep in mind others have been down the same road and recovered from alcohol abuse during pregnancy. Quitting now will help both of you!

Where to turn?

fetal alcohol syndrome

Drinking while pregnant harms your baby.

If you have tried and just can’t stop drinking on your own, tell someone that you need help. There are so many people and programs out there to help you. You are not alone! Your own physician is a great place to start; they know you and your medical history. They will be able to discuss all of the options for treatment based on your medical history. Your physician may even be able to give you medications that could ease withdrawal symptoms or your physician may feel that it would be in your best interest and the best interest of the baby to find a hospital or clinic that you can go to for treatment.

Having the support of a loved one or friend right now is key and a very important factor in recovery. Don’t be afraid to reach out!

Next Steps

You know what you have to do but it’s very difficult. It’s a routine and it can be hard to stop using alcohol, in reality it has become a part of your life. You may need to make changes to that routine, you may not be able to be around certain people, or not go to certain places where you used to drink. Be sure to include your loved ones and close friends, make them aware of the changes and the places you just can’t go to any more. It is so important that they support you and the changes you are making.

Attending counseling may help you make the necessary changes in your life so you can stay sober and have a healthy baby. You will learn to cope with your tough emotions and make good choices. There are so many counseling options available whether it is in a group or one on one.

Supportgroups like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) are a must; they are there to help people who want to stop the abusive behavior. You may be more successful at quitting if you are willing to share your story, listen to the stories of those who may be struggling and those who have successfully quit.

Helpful information on alcohol abuse during pregnancy can be found on the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism’s website.

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