Alcohol & pregnancy: Not a drop

June 27, 2014, 10:33 AM GMT+0

Two-thirds of Americans say that pregnant women should not even have one or two drinks in a week

The state of Alaska has announced that, together with university researchers, they will be installing free pregnancy test dispensers in bar bathrooms as part of a pilot program to limit drinking among pregnant women. This is a serious problem in Alaska, which has the highest rate of fetal alcohol syndrom in the country. The question of how much alcohol, if any, a pregnant woman can consume isn't entirely clear-cut. It is widely known that heavy drinking during pregnancy has serious consequences, but it hasn't been proven that having a couple of drinks a week after the first trimester is harmful.

The latest research from YouGov shows that for over two-thirds of Americans (68%) even this small amount of alcohol isn't okay and only 21% of Americans say that it's okay for pregnant women to have a couple of drinks a week. The older you are, the more likely you are to say that the occasional drink is acceptable, but even then most over-65s (59%) still think that alcohol is not okay for pregnant women.

Among the many things that pregnant women are told to avoid, Americans tend to think that they should avoid hot tubs (44%) and sushi (41%). Only 19% think that it isn't okay for pregnant women to be around cats - due to potential illness contractable from cat faeces - while only 11% think that pregnant women should avoid soft cheeses.

Alaska is not the only state to offer pregnancy tests in bars. Minnesota has run a similar program for a while, though they charge $3 a test. Only ten locations currently sell the tests in Minnesota, however.

Full poll results can be found here.

Image: Getty