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All I Want is For Them to Be Healthy: Avoiding Alcohol, Drugs and Smoking during Your Unplanned Pregnancy

One of the hardest commitments to make is pregnancy. It’s a 24/7 commitment for 40 weeks, and there are only 52 weeks in a year. Over the course of your pregnancy, there may be many people who tell you what you should and shouldn’t do, some have the training and experience and some are speaking from what they have heard. If this is an unplanned pregnancy, this may be much harder, as you were not planning for your life to change. But, the good news is that adoption is always an option. 

Adoption Choices of Texas would like to offer you this helpful resource on avoiding alcohol, drugs and smoking during your unplanned pregnancy. The information found here is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not meant to be taken as medical advice. If you have any questions surrounding your specific pregnancy or health history, you should absolutely listen to your doctor. 

Major Things to Avoid while Pregnant

  1. Alcohol

During your pregnancy that one glass of wine or a bottle of beer won’t hurt. Please keep in mind that one bottle of beer is heavier than your baby for over half of your pregnancy. One of the biggest problems is that the baby cannot metabolize the alcohol as fast as your body can. Some of the biggest concerns with alcohol during your pregnancy is the chance of the baby developing Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, also known as FASDS. This can lead to many physical, behavioral and health problems later in life. 

Some other problems that can come with drinking alcohol while pregnant is that your baby’s organs can become damaged while they are being developed. This can lead to life-long organ damage that may require intense care and surgeries. The two major organs that can be damaged are the kidneys and liver. Both are absolute necessities for full and long lives.  Damage to these can only be fixed by transplants which comes with its own risk. 

  1. Drugs

Drugs are tricky depending on the type you may be using. Recreational drugs are an absolute no. The main reason for this is that it is dangerous not only for your baby but for you as well. However, the dangers it presents to your baby is astronomical.  The biggest concern is that your baby is born addicted to drugs. Withdrawal is hard as an adult and you understand what’s going on. It’s extremely hard on a newborn who doesn’t understand what’s happening to their body, and is also experiencing  confusion adjusting to a new environment.

The other type of drugs is medical. If you have a preexisting condition that requires medications, talk to your doctor. It can be a bit scary when you hear a list of side effects and are told not to take medication while pregnant. Especially when you may need that medicine to be able to function normally in your daily life. Please talk to your doctor about other options, so both you and your baby are in the best health possible. 

  1. Smoking

Smoking is bad, even if you are not doing it. Cigarette smoke denies oxygen to the baby. Being around smoking can lead to all sorts of problems for both you and the baby. One problem t is that it can lead to abnormal blood flow during pregnancy and birth, and to blood hemorrhaging while giving birth, which can cost you your life, your baby’s or both. It can also cause you lung cancer and increases the chances of COPD later in life. 

Smoking can cause a lot of problems to babies while they are in the womb. One is that it slows their growth and development so they are born too small. That may not sound dangerous. Yet, their development will be delayed and will struggle to catch up to where they should be. Premature birth or low birthweight increases the chance of Cerebral Palsy (CP).

Other risks smoking while pregnant carries includes, but are not limited to:

  • Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)
  • Cleft lips and palettes
  • lifelong breathing problems (i.e. asthma) 

Avoiding Alcohol, Drugs and Smoking during Your Unplanned Pregnancy

None of these things are being said to make you feel bad or guilty. This is not a judgement of what you may or may not do.  The goal of any pregnancy is for both mother and baby is to come out of the hospital healthy. Most of these conditions can be avoided by not partaking and following your doctor’s instructions. Your health is just as important as the baby’s. Forty weeks may seem like a long time, but those 40 weeks can determine what sort of future both you and your child see. 

One thing to keep in mind that you could be the healthiest person in the world and the baby may still have health problems. There are usually other things at play like genetics. By avoiding alcohol, drugs and smoking, you are reducing the chances of those things mixing in and reacting with genetics to create worse problems that can be preventable. 

As an expectant woman or birth parent, to learn more about adoption, contact Adoption Choices of Texas. You can call us at 945-444-0333, text us at 945-444-0333, or email us here. If you are hoping to adopt, please visit us here. We look forward to helping you through your adoption journey!

Meet the Author:Courtney Moore was born in Huntington Beach, California. She is currently attending college for English with a minor in History. Her love for writing started at the age of 11 when she won a class competition for a personification of candy in a short story. In her junior year of high school, she was an editor for her school’s literary magazine. In her senior year of high school, her then English teacher told her that she should pursue a career as a literary scholar. The main reason she decided to not pursue that path is that her passions lied more in the creation of writings than the review of it. 

She currently lives in Las Vegas with her very spoiled cat Abby, who she happily adopted from the local animal shelter. Courtney has been a supporter of animal adoptions her whole life.

Her interest in child adoptions began at the age of 14. It was at that age that she learned of how many children were in the foster system. Her own childhood was very unstable; however, she was able to stay with at least one of her parents for a majority of it. As she got older, her interests in adoptions grew. Her hopes are that, one day, the foster care system is fixed and is treated as it should be.


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