Intended for healthcare professionals

Rapid response to:


Low level alcohol consumption and the fetus

BMJ 2005; 330 doi: (Published 17 February 2005) Cite this as: BMJ 2005;330:375

Rapid Response:

Don't take a chance, be a responsible parent

I enjoyed reading this article not least because it has a positive
and a sensible message.
As a paediatrician, I am continuing to see more and more subtle problems
in children like short attention span, poor listening skills,
hyperactivity & behaviour problems which cannot be explained merely by
blaming poor parental skills. Then again, we are seeing as well as
recognising more cases of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder(ADHD)
and Autistic Spectrum Disorders(ASD).
We do know that we are living in a much more polluted environment, eating
more and more processed food rather than fresh food, even fruits which are
big in size but less good in taste are increasingly coming to us from the
cold storage, use of insecticides and pesticides and, of course, not
forgetting the modern men and women, some of whom will not hesitate to
drink and smoke during pregnancy.
I believe the modern lifestyle as well as our attitude is collectively
harming our own health as well as the health of the future generation.
Sensible health warnings by health professionals should not be confused
with health dictatorship.

Competing interests:
None declared

Competing interests: No competing interests

20 February 2005
Ashok Beckaya
SAS Paediatrician
Epsom & St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust, KT18 7EG