Behavioral scientist urges pregnant women to shun alcohol

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A Behavioral Scientist at the General Hospital, Minna, Niger State, Dr Itopa Garba, has advised pregnant women to desist from taking alcohol during pregnancy to avoid developmental, emotional and mental disorder of the foetus.
Garba, who is also a Consultant Psychiatrist, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Minna on Saturday that alcohol intake during pregnancy can put the foetus at risk of several developmental disorders.
He noted that many children who were intellectually backward were as a result of alcoholic intake by their mothers during pregnancy.
“Research has shown that women who drink alcohol during pregnancy tend to have children with low birth weight that are mentally retarded.
“Such a child is not able to develop intellectually like other children of the same age range,” he said.
According to Garba, the risk of taking alcohol during pregnancy outweighs the pleasure of the alcohol drink.
He explained that alcohol consumption during pregnancy was responsible for low birth weight of the baby, saying that alcohol intake passes through the umbilical cord to negatively affect the baby’s Central Nervous System (CNS), heart, brain, eyes and ears, and other vital parts of the body.
“The intake of alcohol hampers the holistic development of the unborn foetus thereby taken its toll on the general well being of the foetus.
“Sadly women who take alcohol during pregnancy looses appetite for food, they do not eat well and are depleted of certain vital vitamins such as iron, vitamin B complex and folic acid the foetus needed,” he said.
He explained that with alcohol consumption by the mother the foetus lack the normal nutrients for growth as a lot of nutrients get lost and affected the foetus CNS which develops within the first three months.
While calling on pregnant women to eat healthily by consuming fruits, fruit juice prepared by themselves and vegetables, Garba said that such was loaded with anti-oxidant and vitamins needed by the mother and unborn baby’s general well-being. (NAN)

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