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Alcohol, drugs and medications

Wandsworth Little Feet

Alcohol

If you are trying to conceive, are pregnant or are breastfeeding you should avoid drinking alcohol. However, if you do choose to drink, to protect your baby, you should drink no more than 1 or 2 units of alcohol, once or twice a week and do not get drunk.

A unit is half a pint of standard strength beer, lager or cider, or a pub measure of spirit. A glass of wine is about 2 units and alcopops are about 1.5 units.

Additional advice from the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) advises women to avoid alcohol in the first three months in particular, because of the increased risk of miscarriage.

For tasty non alcoholic Mocktails recipes for a girly night in, click here

Fathers might also decide to avoid drinking excessively when you are trying for a baby because:

  • alcohol kills sperm, and excess alcohol can make men less fertile

  • heavy drinking can cause temporary impotence.

In short, you have less chance of becoming pregnant if the father drinks too much.

Click here for more information on pregnancy and alcohol

If you are finding it difficult to cut down, you can get help and support from  services in Wandsworth.

Medicines

If you are taking any medications it is important that you tell your doctor as soon as you think you might be pregnant. This is because there are some medicines that can be harmful to an unborn baby. This can include medicines that are bought over the counter.

If you are on treatment for an existing medical condition, it may be safer to take some medicines than to leave your condition untreated. Your doctor or midwife will be able to advise you on how best to manage your condition during pregnancy.

If you are unsure about whether a medicine is safe in pregnancy, discuss it with your doctor or midwife.

Other drugs

The use of recreational, street drugs or 'legal highs' can be harmful to your baby. It is important that you speak to your doctor as soon as you think you might be pregnant so they can give you help and advice about how to become drug- free.

More information and advice on local services can be found here or you can call FRANK on 0800 77 66 00

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