CHILDREN born to mothers who drank alcohol after their birth and breast-fed were significantly lighter, had lower verbal IQ scores and a range of other problems, a study has found.
Conducted by experts from Stellenbosch University, UCT and institutions in the US, the study examined the prevalence and duration of alcohol exposure to infants and toddlers via breast-feeding.
Alcohol use during the period of breast-feeding was found to significantly compromise a child’s development.
The data originated from four population-based studies of foetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASDs) among Grade 1 students and their mothers in communities in the Western Cape.
The study found mothers of children with FASD were most likely to consume alcohol during breast-feeding and mothers who did not drink during pregnancy were least likely to consume alcohol after birth.
Nevertheless, even 42% of mothers who did not drink prenatally consumed alcohol…