Should You Get Drunk and Make a Baby?
Let’s get one thing straight: Getting pregnant should be as fun as you can make it. Sure, for some of us ladies out there, it’s not always a simple equation of a crazy night out and then a bit of sexy time back home—but for many (amazingly) lucky couples, it can be. But just how crazy can a night out get when you’re trying to conceive?
The pressure of oh, I don’t know, creating a whole new human being, can be super stressful and even intimidating for both of you—in fact, chances are that you’re on the verge of telling off the next person who dares suggest that you “just relax and things will take their course.” Still, unwinding with a little drinky-drink probably doesn’t sound so bad right about now—but whether or not that’s a good idea when you’re trying to get things going in the baby zone can be a little confusing. Obviously once you know you’re having a baby, you’re going to trade in that gin fizz for a ginger ale, but when you’re trying to get pregnant, it can be tricky to know what’s safe and what’s not.
As a mom to four, and a woman who appreciates a nice glass of wine, I’ve done my fair share of reading on this topic, and I’ve had the chance to chat with some of the top docs in the business. The official line I’ve heard over and over is that it’s always better to be safe than sorry, that no sip is worth jeopardizing the chance at having a healthy, happy babe down the line—and that’s the policy I generally follow for myself. That said, there’s plenty of legit scientific research that shows that you don’t necessarily need to forego your favorite pinot grigio quite yet. Couples who drink daily, or who go on an occasional bender do tend to take longer to get pregnant than their teetotaler friends, but a lot of experts and doctors agree that a drink or two per week isn’t likely to affect your fertility in the slightest.
But before we raise a glass to that, let’s take a step back and remember that getting pregnant is only half the battle—you want to stay pregnant and have a healthy birth. I’ve got good news for you there, too. A 2004 study of hundreds of couples showed that there was only a real, measurable increase of risk of miscarriage (or, as scientists call it, spontaneous abortion) in cases where either the mom or the dad was drinking ten or more drinks a week at the time of conception. And yes, I said mom or dad. So check in with your honey and make sure he knows the facts, too.
My advice to you? If you think it’ll help move things along, go ahead and crack open that bottle of bubbly on Friday night (unless you’re already having fertility issues, in which case, yeah, you’re probably taking zero chances!), but def stay away from Long Island Iced Teas and random shots. Your future baby (and your lack of headache tomorrow!) will thank you.