The American Academy of Pediatrics stated that no amount of alcohol should be viewed as safe throughout pregnancy and called exposure to prenatal alcohol the leading preventable cause of birth defects and intellectual disabilities in children, Today.com reports.
In a report published in the journal Pediatrics, the Academy underscored that drinking during pregnancy can lead to fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD), a group of conditions that can occur in a child whose mother consumed alcohol during pregnancy and that drinking-related birth defects and developmental disabilities are avoidable through abstentions.
The Academy noted that prenatal alcohol exposure is linked to higher incidences of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, and learning disabilities, such as problems with math and language, memory skills and impulse control.
Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders are also linked to numerous conditions that can include physical, emotional, behavioral and learning problems and can range from mild to severe. The most serious type, fetal alcohol syndrome, can cause problems with growth, behavioral problems or abnormal facial features.
“There is no known absolutely safe quantity, frequency, type, or timing of alcohol consumption during pregnancy, but having no PAE (prenatal alcohol exposure) translates into no FASD,” the report said. “Despite research evidence clearly documenting the spectrum of detrimental consequences of PAE, too many women continue to drink alcohol during pregnancy.”
One in 10 pregnant American women admitted to consuming alcohol occasionally, and one-third of those admitted to binge drinking, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a report last month. The report said as many as 5 percent of first-graders in the U.S. may have a fetal alcohol spectrum disorder.
Click here to read more about Fetal Alcohol Syndrom.