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The evidence base is clear: there is no safe time or safe amount of alcohol to drink while pregnant, because a baby's brain develops throughout the nine months of pregnancy from conception to birth. 

Drinking alcohol while pregnant can cause miscarriage, stillbirth, premature birth, low birth weight, as well as Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD), which is a lifelong disability. 

But don't worry, you're not alone in this journey. It's up to all of us, as a community, to support those who are pregnant, trying for a baby or breastfeeding to make the safest choice by not drinking. Below are some resources to help you.

Where do the recommendations not to drink when planning a pregnancy, while pregnant or breastfeeding come from?

Recommendations are based on the latest Australian research and are included in the National Health & Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Australian guidelines to reduce health risks from drinking alcohol, specifically, Guideline 3: Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding, which says:

  • To prevent harm from alcohol to their unborn child, women who are pregnant or planning a pregnancy should not drink alcohol.
  • For women who are breastfeeding, not drinking alcohol is safest for their baby.

 Read the 2020 Australian guidelines to reduce health risks from drinking alcohol here.

One Drink

A joint initiative between the Mental Health Commission (MHC) and Cancer Council Western Australia, the Alcohol.Think Again ‘One Drink’ campaign includes detailed information about alcohol and pregnancy, advice on how to stay alcohol-free, and tips on supporting others to have an alcohol-free pregnancy.

Every Moment Matters

The core message of this national campaign by The Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE) is that every moment matters in pregnancy. The campaign website includes resources and FAQs for those who are pregnant or planning a pregnancy, partners, friends, family members, and health professionals.