As most of us know these days, the obligation to keep your baby safe and healthy starts long before the little bundle of joy even arrives. When it comes to drinking during pregnancy or while trying to conceive, the safest choice is no alcohol at all. But even with the best intentions, abstaining completely for 9 months (or more) can be easier said than done – especially when well-meaning friends and family may try to tell you that “just a little bit” won’t hurt.
The truth is, there is no known safe amount of alcohol to consume during pregnancy. Many scientists and researchers believe that even tiny amounts of alcohol could limit the potential of a developing fetus. The risk level is individual – it can be affected by genetics (how well a person’s body processes alcohol), nutrition, other substance use, whether the fetus is male or female, and lots of other factors. The outcomes of prenatal alcohol exposure are likewise varied and unpredictable. Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder covers a range of lifelong learning, behavioural and developmental disabilities.
Dry9 is here to help Albertans make the safest choice, to provide the necessary resources and start the conversation about the effects of alcohol during pregnancy. Alberta Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis (AGLC) introduced Dry9 in December 2017, as a way of helping to raise awareness around the real facts about alcohol and pregnancy. It’s also an empowering way to connect the community of pregnant women who are choosing to avoid alcohol completely throughout their pregnancies.
The Dry9 site includes Stuff You’ll Hear (SYH) and What We Know (WWK); two sections that tackle common misconceptions about alcohol and pregnancy. There’s also plenty of Dry9 Tips for the lifestyle adjustments that come with staying dry, and a series of funny videos for pregnant women to send to the people in their life, like friends, family and spouses.
Now into its second year, Dry9 has signed up over a thousand women who are committed to enjoying an alcohol-free pregnancy. They all receive nine months’ worth of support and resources that make it easier and more fun to stay dry. The monthly emails include developmental updates and fun stuff like Mocktail of the Month (MOTM), with recipes for drinks like Mum-osas, Non-Collins and Pretty in Pink Spritzers.
Those who want to get social can join the new Dry9 Facebook group to get support and advice from peers on staying dry, make friends, share photos, brag about your cute babies, and tell all your family and friends with a Facebook profile pic overlay.
Speaking of friends and family, their support can be incredibly important to moms-to-be who have committed to a dry pregnancy. Partners and other loved ones are encouraged to sign up as a supporter and receive the same emails as the Dry9er in their life, with tips, resources and fun facts about the baby’s development. Even if you won’t be doing a Dry9 alongside the pregnant person in your life, you can visit the site to learn other ways to show your support.
Having a little one on the way is an exciting time, but it comes with unique pressures and worries. Get informed by visiting the Dry9 site and empower yourself with resources to last you through the next nine months.
Sign up to do a Dry9 today
Doing a Dry9 means that you are choosing to not drink any alcohol during your pregnancy. Sign up to get words of encouragement and support during your Dry9, along with resources and timely facts about what a great job you’re doing to let your child develop to their full potential.
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