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It is evident that medical professionals should always implement health promotion strategies in their practice. It is particularly important for nurses who work with pregnant women. This paper discusses the impact of drinking during pregnancy and outlines the significance of health promotion. It suggests the measures that can be taken to eliminate the risks and addresses the aspects of educating underserved communities on the problem.
Pregnancy and Alcohol Use
Alcohol use during pregnancy can pose a serious threat to the mother and her child. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2018) outline several possible outcomes of alcohol consumption, including miscarriage, stillbirth, as well as intellectual and behavioral disabilities of a child. It is necessary to note that even little amount of alcohol is dangerous, so it is vital to eliminate drinking completely. Moreover, Schuiling and Likis (2017) report that substance use can cause severe damage to women in general compared to men. Similarly, Tharpe, Farley, and Jordan (2017) list alcohol as one of the serious pregnancy-related risks along with smoking and drug use.
Working with Underserved Communities
The majority of the patient population that I treat within my practicum setting are individuals from underserved communities, which means that it is vital to provide them with knowledge on the issue. The possible challenges that this group of the population may encounter include the inability to recognize a pregnancy, lack of financial support and medical coverage, as well as undesired pregnancies (Shah, Revere, & Toy, 2018).
Women from underserved communities may present in the office with the signs of alcohol abuse, so it is also vital to consider referring them to medical professionals to eliminate adverse outcomes of this habit. As a healthcare provider, I understand that I must provide high-quality services aimed to identify health risks for each of my patients, as well as promote healthy behaviors that will improve individuals’ conditions.
Means of Health Promotion
The study by Haver, Brieger, Zoungrana, Ansari, and Kagoma (2015) shows that it is vital to develop the strategy that will address all of the issues of prenatal and postpartum care, including family planning, contraception, as well as potential risks related to pregnancy. In my opinion, the primary educational pieces that I can use are posters and flyers, which should be easy-to-read and draw patients’ attention.
They will include necessary information about the risks associated with alcohol use during pregnancy and explain why women should reduce substance intake in general. It is vital to provide examples of adverse outcomes related to drinking to help patients understand the threat that alcohol may pose. Women can take flyers home to be able to consult them for additional information any time. In addition, I would also suggest publishing newsletters available free at the clinic. Such educational pieces may contain explicit information about the risks associated with alcohol consumption, the possible outcomes of it, and the measures each patient can take to eliminate them.
This report shows that alcohol use may be a significant problem for pregnant women, especially in underserved communities. It may cause severe health outcomes for both patients and their children. To avoid these consequences, I would use various educational materials, such as posters and flyers along with newsletters. This way, I could illustrate the significance of the elimination of drinking and show to patients that their behavior may be dangerous.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2018). Alcohol use in pregnancy. Web.
Haver, J., Brieger, W., Zoungrana, J., Ansari, N., & Kagoma, J. (2015). Experiences engaging community health workers to provide maternal and newborn health services: Implementation of four programs. International Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics, 130(2), 32-39.
Schuiling, K. D., & Likis, F. E. (2017). Women’s gynecologic health (3rd ed.). Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Publishers.
Shah, J. S., Revere, F. L., & Toy, E. C. (2018). Improving rates of early entry prenatal care in an underserved population. Maternal and Child Health Journal, 22(12), 1738-1742.
Tharpe, N. L., Farley, C., & Jordan, R. G. (2017). Clinical practice guidelines for midwifery & women’s health (5th ed.). Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Publishers.