Alcohol and drug use

Taking care of our health and wellbeing during pregnancy helps give our babies a great start in life.

Pregnancy is a good time to think about our habits and the changes we might like to make.

There are many myths about drug and alcohol use during pregnancy – use the quick true or false quiz below to find out what you already know.

True or false?

Click to reveal!

True. Alcohol in your blood crosses the placenta during pregnancy and is associated with increased risk of stillbirth, premature birth and low birth weight, as well as many other serious complications with your baby’s development. If you feel you may be dependent on drinking alcohol, there are many sources of support you can access. Speak to your midwife who will be able to help.

False. There is no safe limit for drinking alcohol in pregnancy. The recommendation is to avoid alcohol completely.

False. Cannabis, cocaine, heroin and other drugs do cross the placenta to the baby, entering their circulation.

True. Your healthcare team can refer you to a specialist midwife or doctor who will support you throughout you pregnancy.

Talking to a midwife or doctor about your alcohol or drug use can often seem challenging and you may be worried about being judged. Healthcare professionals are there to support you to have as healthy a pregnancy as possible. Changing habits takes time so thinking about your alcohol or drug use now is the first step on your journey to giving your baby the best start in life.

You’re taking that first step today - click on the links below for more information.

How does alcohol affect my baby?

Where can I find more information about how drugs might affect my baby?

What are the benefits of cutting down or quitting alcohol?

    For more information on how drugs and alcohol may affect you and your baby during pregnancy visit:

    For additional support:

    • Drinkline – 0300123 1110
    • Frank About Drugs – 0300 123 6600