May 15, 2015
Bruce/Grey Health Unit launches Alcohol and Pregnancy Don’t Mix campaign
By Chris Fell
Coasters with the message “Be safe. Have an alcohol-free pregnancy” are being distributed to licensed establishments throughout Grey Bruce this month.
The key message is not to drink any alcohol when planning and during pregnancy. The coasters, from the Grey Bruce Health Unit and the Fetal Alcohol Neurobehavioural Leadership Team, target women who are planning a pregnancy or who are already pregnant.
The campaign increases awareness that drinking any amount of alcohol will have some effect on the baby’s development. This campaign would not be possible without the participation of the licensed establishments.
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) describes the harm that can occur to a fetus when a woman drinks alcohol during her pregnancy. Alcohol can cause both birth defects and brain damage to the unborn baby. There is no known safe amount or type of alcohol to drink during pregnancy.
According to Health Canada, 1% of births involve alcohol use while a Grey Bruce study found 4% of births locally showed use of alcohol during pregnancy (Gareri, et al., 2008).
For more information on FASD or to learn more about local resources and supports for pregnancy, please call Public Health at 519-376-9420 or 1-800-263-3456 or visit our website at www.publichealthgreybruce.on.ca.