Pregnancy, Breastfeeding and Substance Use

Alcohol and Pregnancy Don't Mix

Drinking alcohol during pregnancy can lead to Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD).

For alcohol treatment services in Waterloo Region see Services for Pregnant or Breastfeeding Women Involved with Alcohol and/or Drugs

Find more information on the Alcohol in Pregnancy page, or on Motherisk website1.

What about breastfeeding and drinking?

At present, there is limited research on the effects of alcohol during breastfeeding. What is known is the fact that:

  • alcohol passes into a woman's breast milk
  • the baby's nervous system is developing rapidly at this stage, and 
  • the baby has an underdeveloped ability to metabolize alcohol

If you decide to have an occasional alcoholic drink, it is best to avoid breastfeeding for about two hours after consuming the alcoholic beverage.

It is safest not to drink during pregnancy. What does this mean?


Oxycodone, OxyNeo, Percocet, Fentanyl, Tylenol #3, Heroin, Morphine, Demerol

If you're thinking about tapering off from an opiate, it needs to be done slowly before the third trimester.

Withdrawal from these drugs in the third trimester can cause early labour!

If you are thinking about starting treatment click here: Methadone - Ontario Addiction Treatment Centre 

1 Region of Waterloo Public Health does not necessarily endorse or recommend any particular brand advertised on the Motherisk website.