USA Today (2/2, Szabo) reports, “Women of childbearing age should avoid alcohol unless they’re using contraception, federal health officials said” yesterday. “‘Alcohol can permanently harm a developing baby before a woman knows she is pregnant,’ said Anne Schuchat, principal deputy director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.” Schuchat pointed out, “About half of all pregnancies in the United States are unplanned, and even if planned, most women won’t know they are pregnant for the first month or so, when they might still be drinking.”
The Washington Post (2/2, Izadi) reports in “Health & Science” that “an estimated 3.3 million women who drink are sexually active but not on birth control, according to a CDC report released” yesterday. In addition, “three out of four women who want to get pregnant don’t stop drinking alcohol when they stop using” contraception. The agency “warns that consuming alcohol during pregnancy can lead to fetal alcohol spectrum disorders,” and “there is no known amount of alcohol that’s safe to consume while pregnant.”
— “CDC: Young women should avoid alcohol unless using birth control,” Liz Szabo, USA Today, February 3, 2016.