Anyone have a drink while pregnant? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 27 Old 10-24-2012, 12:12 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Its the main thing I miss, especially during the fall and all these cider beers and October Fest and pumpkin ales!

 

I have the occasional 1/2 glass of wine, but really want a beer. Or half a beer. Or a sip!

 

What are your thoughts on occasional drinking while pregnant? I'm currently 13 weeks.


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#2 of 27 Old 10-24-2012, 12:25 PM
 
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I will be 13 weeks on Saturday. I have been craving beer this pregnancy, too. I have had 2 sips of DH's beer when we were out to eat. That its so far. I craved wine with my daughter and had 2 - 3 half glasses in the last half of my pregnancy. I guess I don't have any info on it but I have had a drink while pregnant in the past.


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#3 of 27 Old 10-24-2012, 12:37 PM
 
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Yep, I've had some occasionally. I probably wouldn't during the first trimester, but after that, I'm ok with it. Having a couple of beers isn't the same as going out and getting wasted.


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#4 of 27 Old 10-24-2012, 01:35 PM
 
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DH and I are beer geeks, and I will often take a "toll" from his glass if it is full of something interesting. It's only one very small sip, barely enough to cover my tongue and definitely less than a swig. My thought is it it's not enough to even come close to putting alcohol in my bloodstream, then it's okay. One night DH pulled out a 750mL bottle of a very nice local nanobrew which I had not yet tried, and I couldn't resist. I took a 3oz tasting glass out of the cabinet and poured 2 fingers into it. I probably drank half an ounce over the course of two hours. Again, I don't think this could possibly hurt, given that even among groups of women who binge or drink excessively during pregnancy, the rate of FAS spectrum is still pretty low.

 

A recent article I saw on WebMD made the point that since there is no established lower limit which is "safe", and Americans as a culture tend to go to extremes, doctors adopted a policy of complete avoidance.

 

I tried a couple midwife practices, and told them both about my occasional sips. I got two different reactions. One said it was totally fine, the other just said "don;t tell me about that" with a wink that was somehow knowing and scolding at the same time.

 

It's your choice to make, but those are my two cents.
 


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#5 of 27 Old 10-25-2012, 07:29 AM
 
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Yep, I've had some occasionally. I probably wouldn't during the first trimester, but after that, I'm ok with it. Having a couple of beers isn't the same as going out and getting wasted.

i agree with this. i will have a beer or a glass of wine here and there later on in the PG. new research says drinking in moderation is actually beneficial 


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#6 of 27 Old 10-25-2012, 01:14 PM
 
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I drank in moderation with DD and felt totally comfortable about it. In fact, I was craving salmon sashimi and white wine and indulged in both--in moderation. I have also read that small amounts of beer or wine can actually be beneficial. I read that up to a glass or beer every night is still considered moderate drinking, though I don't think I'd feel comfortable drinking that often while pregnant. I just don't think I'd WANT to. Usually I lose interest after a few sips, half a glass/beer anyhow.

 

I think I had a little bit of wine some time during the first trimester last time (definitely before I found out, around 6 weeks pregnant) but this time I think I'll wait until after the first tri to have anything more than a sip or two. But I can definitely see myself having a whole beer with Thanksgiving or a glass of red with Christmas dinner.


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#7 of 27 Old 10-25-2012, 01:25 PM
 
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I don't drink anyway, only will take a taste smaller than a real sip of anything - generally our homemade mead. Can't stand the mouth burning and dizziness I get from a real sip. So pregnancy doesn't change anything for me. But I am convinced a half a serving or so of alcohol once in a while won't do baby any harm if you do enjoy it.

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#8 of 27 Old 10-25-2012, 06:43 PM
 
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I have half a beer a couple times a week.  When I had bad nausea in my first trimester and it was hot out, a really cold beer in the afternoon saved my sanity and let me cook dinner without tossing my cookies.  I would open a bottle, pour half of it into a glass and sip it while I cooked.  DH drank the rest when he got home.  I don't drink to the point where I can feel it, and I have no taste for wine or spirits at the moment.  My body just really wants the bitterness of beer, so I'm okay with that.

 

Other parts of the world are a lot less uptight about drinking while pregnant, and I don't see them having massive problems because of it.  But it does tend to be part of an overall healthier cultural attitude towards alcohol in general - one where alcohol is a gustatory pleasure and an important adjunct to meals, not a route to getting plastered - and a much greater cultural appreciation of QUALITY in booze over quantity.  (ie, no Budweiser)


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#9 of 27 Old 10-30-2012, 08:43 AM
 
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I have a hard time with this too, since I really like wine/beer/sake.  But having taught sooo many kids with FAS (Fetal Alcohol Syndrome) and seeing how devastating it is, I tend to get real anal about alcohol during pregnancy, so I deal with the occasional craving by having a few sips of my husband's drinks just for the flavor.

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#10 of 27 Old 10-30-2012, 09:15 AM
 
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I was very sick during the first trimester. Once or twice a week I would have a very small glass of mead to help settle my stomach enough to let me sleep.  I was also on a lot of medication for most of the pregnancy including Zofran and Unisom and other things like that, and I wasn't thrilled to be taking them either.  But I don't think the maybe 4 small cups of mead I had were any worse.  I didn't feel the effects at all, but the taste helped me relax.

 

I also have some wine in the pantry now that I'm in the third tri just in case I have contractions, to help settle them down.  Haven't had to use it yet, knock on wood.

 

When I'm not pregnant I'm not a drinker at all.  Maybe 2-3 times a year I'll buy a cheap bottle of wine and drink it over the course of a couple of nights, or a six pack of one of those hard lemonades and nurse those over the course of a month or so.  Or once in a while I'll buy a cocktail at a restaurant for a special occasion, but I'm usually way too cheap to do that normally, and even if I do order one drink, I've never actually finished it, much less ordered a second.  And I hate beer no matter what.  So... it's not like alcohol is a factor in my life normally anyway.  It's not a struggle for me to give it up.  If I do drink it during pregnancy it's with an actual purpose, along the lines of medicinal purposes.  Ironically.  Heh.

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#11 of 27 Old 11-03-2012, 11:27 AM
 
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Personally, I wouldn't take the risk. Your baby is forming and developing all his/her vital organs for the rest of life. Why not just abstain until after the birth? Frankly, if you're having severe cravings for alcohol it might be a good opportunity to exercise self control anyhow (please don't take that the wrong way). I'm a drinker myself but didn't have a sip during pregnancy.


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#12 of 27 Old 11-03-2012, 11:40 AM
 
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Typically that is why I abstain during the first trimester, I feel like the foundations are being built and rapid development is taking place during this time, so I try to limit my caffeine, abstain from alcohol, avoid iffy herbs etc etc. But later in the 2nd and 3rd trimesters I don't feel that a glass of wine here or there is going to have any effect, honestly. I don't think many women who indulge in the occasional sip or even full glass of beer or wine are doing so because of severe cravings. That sounds more like addiction to me. I guess, I have heard of pregnant women craving darker beers, but a little bit of beer is not like an alcoholic going on a bender.

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#13 of 27 Old 11-03-2012, 11:10 PM
 
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I've been having half glasses of wine here or there since I got into second tri. I just remembered I liked hard ciders about 2 months ago so I've been having one of those every week or two, or when I remember really (I forget I like alcohol apparently lol). Midwife told me this week that at this time, with my prodromal labor going on and on for what feels like eons, a glass of wine or a good beer/cider is just fine if it will help me relax - something I have not been doing well since these cramps began. Just don't drink to feel buzzed and it's not so bad.


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#14 of 27 Old 11-07-2012, 11:59 AM
 
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I haven't personally but I have been tempted.  I might have a glass of wine in labor.

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#15 of 27 Old 11-07-2012, 12:56 PM
 
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On occassion after the first trimester I'll have a small glass of wine or half a beer.  The "no alcohol during pregnancy" is really just a North American thing, driven by a litigeous culture and by the belief that people have no sense of moderation.  For thousands of years women drank during pregnancy (watered down beer or wine) because this was safer than drinking straight water.  I don't believe that a drink is going to cause any detrimental effects and haven't seen anything to make me believe otherwise.

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#16 of 27 Old 11-07-2012, 03:08 PM
 
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What I've heard is that it's not as safe during the first and third trimesters as during the second, due to the amount of brain growth and development going on at those times. I went wine tasting when I was probably 30ish weeks pregnant. I had a sip or two of 5-6 different kinds of wines, so not really much at all. I didn't drink any more than that, but I don't think a little bit of wine is harmful, and I would imagine the same about beer.

 

I will say, though, I'm really glad this little one is due just in time for me to get some seasonal cherry beer. I love that stuff.


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#17 of 27 Old 11-07-2012, 03:55 PM
 
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I'm personally okay with drinking during pregnancy, in moderation of course. I've been craving beer this time around (I think it's the fizziness) so I let myself have one when I feel like it. I believe in what I call the European pregnancy-- things in moderation are okay (alcohol, caffeine, etc).


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#18 of 27 Old 11-07-2012, 04:16 PM
 
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This pregnancy I've been having a lot more episodes of regular BHs and pressure, so I've resorted to wine a couple times. It always helps and I'd rather have a couple ounces of wine than possible PTL. That's just me!


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#19 of 27 Old 11-08-2012, 03:00 PM
 
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As a disclaimer I should start this by saying I DO NOT RECOMMEND DOING WHAT I DO redface.gif

 

Anyway. I do have the occasional glass of wine, did with my 1st too, and I definitely sip from hub's beer when it's frosty cold. I would say it probably ads up to about a full drink every few weeks but I'm not secretive about it with my care provider so I feel ok with it. For me anyway. This is in no way a recommendation to anyone to drink in pregnancy :)


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#20 of 27 Old 11-15-2012, 08:16 AM
 
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Not all American doctors are against drinking a bit during preg. You don't have to totally abstain, unless it's 95% alcohol! 
 

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#21 of 27 Old 11-23-2012, 07:02 AM
 
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So far scientists have not been able to find out how much is too much when it comes to alcohol and pregnancy. That means no one really knows if it is safe or not to drink. That is why both the US and the UK recommend women do not drink at all during their pregnancy. Also there was a recent scientific study linking mothers drinking to a drop in IQ of their children. It found that women who consumed a moderate amount of alcohol could noticeably lower their children's IQ. It was a pretty exhaustive study and it makes some good points for not drinking while pregnant. Then there is the fact that people who drink to excess can damage their brain (both the white and grey matter). While I am sure pregnant women are not doing this, there is no way of knowing how your baby will react even to a small amount of alcohol. They are growing and forming throughout the pregnancy and it is just not a good idea to mess with that process. Finally, if you are craving a sip or beer, why not just get some non-alcoholic beer and enjoy as much as you want. 

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#22 of 27 Old 11-23-2012, 08:32 AM
 
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I'm a teacher, and when I went through teaching college we had to take a course on special exceptions in learning (learning disabilities). We studied a unit on Fetal Alcohol and later I attended an FAS workshop and presentation by child development professionals ... what shocked me the most was to learn that alcohol is one of the few drugs that actual affects, alters and inhibits your DNA and genetic development while in utero. That's why there is no 'safe' amount because even exposure to small or moderate amounts can potentially affect your development permanently in some way. Can you necessarily measure it once the child is born? No, because you will never have a "control" child sharing the exact same genetic code to compare it to, and even then, the differences may be minute if the drinking is in small amounts, however you're still exposing your child to a drug that can and will alter their development... a child may very well still perform in normal ranges of IQ, development, growth, function etc but I can't help but feel like I am robbing my child of their full potential and the body they were meant to be born with if I consume a drug with known consequences without there being a beneficial medical or therapeutic reason that out weighs those risks. I also want to say at this point that I am not judiging those who choose to drink, but simply explaining my reasoning for not.

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#23 of 27 Old 11-23-2012, 10:40 AM
 
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... what shocked me the most was to learn that alcohol is one of the few drugs that actual affects, alters and inhibits your DNA and genetic development while in utero.

 

What may also shock you is that the type and amount of food you eat can do the same thing.  It's why pregnant women are also advised not to cut carbohydrate intake too far, even if they have gestational diabetes, because the resultant production of ketones in the body can cause genetic changes in the fetus, predisposing the eventual child and adult to excessive fat gain and retention.  The theory behind this, which makes sense, is that maternal ketone production signals a resource-poor environment so babies who are predisposed to extra-efficient energy use (ie, lotsa chub) will have a distinct survival advantage.  However, in this era, few babies exposed to this sort of maternal environment actually ARE born into a resource-poor environment so what was once an adaptation is now a hindrance and a health risk.

 

Interesting, no?  There are other environmental signals that are also suspected to affect, alter and "inhibit" (although that's a bit of an uninformative term since there are definitely times when inhibition is the appropriate cellular response) genetic development.  Some of them are relatively benign and adaptive in the right environments, but some (like exposure to certain plastics) are not. 

 

Alcohol is certainly not the only drug that can affect in utero development - there are hints that marijuana can have similar effects when used to excess and ANY drug that can cross the blood-brain barrier has that potential also. 

 

My point is, there is a LOT to worry about, carrying a child in our toxin-laden, nutrient-poor but calorie-rich, sunlight-deprived, artificial environment.  And, as was pointed out, there is no way to tell how ANYTHING has affected your child unless the effects are severe or you manage to produce identical embryos and gestate one of them in somebody else, strictly controlling both environments.  Your child is NOT going to be the epitomy of what his or her genes can produce.  End of story.  Nobody is. Is having half a beer here and there going to make any significant difference? There is, of course, an outside chance that yes, it's conceivable.  Not taking your vitamin D or folate consistently or driving rather than walking as much as possible or not forcing down your dinner when you're not hungry and then not eating until the next morning or drinking out of a plastic cup or forgetting which one of your water bottles was the one you didn't send back when the BPA thing came up... those are also likely to have a similar effect.  And let's not forget the damn STRESS you'd be under if you worried about all of those things!!!  Stressed mamas make all sorts of nasty hormones that can signal a hostile environment to a developing fetus, resulting in an ill-adapted child when the environment turns out to be not so bad after all.

 

There is no logical reason to single out a very modest amount of alcohol as something to avoid, over any of these factors.  Personally, I take more care to keep my vitamin D levels good and avoid plastics.  These things are easier for me than avoiding the odd tasty, tasty craft beer that sends happy yum signals to my wee babe.  If you want to avoid the booze like the plague and still keep swigging your bottled water, so be it.  I'm not saying that's the wrong choice, but I AM saying that alcohol is not uniquely or definitively any more toxic or likely to cause genetic harm than any of those other things, unless used to excess. 


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#24 of 27 Old 11-27-2012, 07:15 PM
 
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I've kept up with my usual tasting-my-husband's beer or cider routine since getting the BFP, but haven't really had anything more than sips because my stomach simply hasn't been up to it. Honestly, there are so many things we're told to avoid during pregnancy, half of which, it seems, one only learns about after giving birth, that I'm just not willing to be paranoid about all of it. I'll change my normal behavior a little, but I refuse to be absolutely strict and avoid anything that has a remote possibility of harming the little one . . . there's so much out there that I'll be afraid to leave my bed.

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#25 of 27 Old 11-28-2012, 02:40 PM
 
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This pregnancy I've been having a lot more episodes of regular BHs and pressure, so I've resorted to wine a couple times. It always helps and I'd rather have a couple ounces of wine than possible PTL. That's just me!


I never would have thought about wine helping with BH's. That's kind of a good idea. I mean my midwifery book recommends a drink for PTL so it would make sense that it would help BH too.

 

I have been having cravings for beer this whole pregnancy. I still haven't had one though. I just ate my way through a pizza and if we had some right now I would go for a half a beer. I craved wine with my DD and had maybe 4 half glasses the whole pregnancy.


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#26 of 27 Old 11-28-2012, 07:41 PM
 
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After my first trimesters I never had a problem w/ a drink, usually 1 a week. If I felt the slightest bit more than relaxed I cut it off immediately. But I have a larger frame as well. If I were 5'4 & 115lb I'd probably drink much less or not at all while pregnant. I always figured since I was 5'7 & closer to 150 I could process a drink fairly well w/ no ill effects. I've tried to drink w/ this baby & it just turns my stomach so I've no problem abstaining. My first baby I went 43 weeks & had 2 huge glasses of merlot as he had overstayed his welcome & I'm not sure that that didn't contribute to labor starting the next day.


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#27 of 27 Old 11-28-2012, 09:40 PM
 
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Personally, I feel like light drinking after the first trimester (say, no more than a glass of wine/week) is very unlikely to cause any issues. Unfortunately, wine and beer just do not appeal to me while pregnant so I haven't been drinking anything. I was looking forward to a small glass of wine on turkey day but the first sip totally turned me off. 

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