What are the side effects of drinking during the first trimester?

Q. What effects will binge drinking have on my unborn child?

Answered by
Dr. Reetika
and medically reviewed by Dr. Sneha Kannan
This is a premium question & answer published on Aug 31, 2020 and last reviewed on: Apr 27, 2021

Hi doctor,

I am 5 weeks 3 days pregnant now. I was excessively binge drinking for the past four months. I stopped at the fourth week of pregnancy after missing my periods. I am scared. Will it cause any ill effects on my unborn child?



Welcome to icliniq.com.

You are pregnant now and so you have stopped drinking. It is a good step. Drinking while pregnancy causes ill effects on the fetus. You got aware of it and so you have stopped drinking. Stop feeling guilty and stay happy. There are multiple types of scans and marker tests done at various stages of pregnancy. It reveals the likely complexities in the unborn child if the child has it.

Thank you doctor,

Kindly suggest the markers and tests taken before the first trimester to know whether there are any issues.



Welcome back to icliniq.com.

I understand your concern. You are feeling guilty for the consumption of alcohol in the past. Do not be stressed and it is not good for you at this time. Stay happy for the health of your baby. There are various indicators and tests that can help to know the health of the baby.

Thank you doctor,

Kindly suggest the tests and indicators.



Welcome back to icliniq.com.

Consumption of alcohol during pregnancy can affect fetal health. It is good to hear that you have stopped drinking at four weeks. In early pregnancy, alcohol consumption causes miscarriage. During the first trimester, you will have a scan at 6 to 7 weeks to see the fetal heartbeat. Between 11 to 14 weeks, a double marker test is done and an NT scan (nuchal scan) is taken. It gives results about the abnormalities in the fetus. You should not drink again as it can adversely affect fetal growth. Baby can develop alcohol withdrawal syndrome after delivery.

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