Alcohol and pregnancy don’t mix. This September marks the first annual FASD Awareness Month.
What is FASD?
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) is an umbrella term used to cover the various effects that can occur when babies are exposed to alcohol during pregnancy. This includes Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS), the most well-known and serious result.
FASD effects can include behavioral, mental or learning disabilities, and birth defects, including facial deformities.
Any alcohol – regardless of the type, amount, or frequency – can lead to FASD.
Did you know?
- FASD affects 1 in 100 infants born each year – more than autism, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, cystic fibrosis, spina bifida, and sudden infant death syndrome combined.
- The US spends and estimated $5.4 billion each year treating FAS alone.
- Each year, as many as 40,000 babies are born with FASD.
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders are not curable, but they are 100% preventable. Choose not to drink if you are pregnant, or suspect you are. Alcohol causes the most serious long-term effects of all substances misused or abused during pregnancy.
- No amount of alcohol has been proven “safe” for your baby.
- There is no safe time to drink alcohol during pregnancy.
- If you are drinking alcohol, take proper steps to prevent pregnancy.
Did you use alcohol or drugs during pregnancy?
You are not alone. Join the Circle of Hope/Birth Mother’s Network (COH/BMN), a network of women who used alcohol or drugs during pregnancy and may have a child with FASD. The women of the Circle of Hope support one another in recovery and through the challenges of parenting a child with FASD.
For more information about the Circle of Hope, visit: http://www.nofas.org/circleofhope/.
For more information about FASD and alcohol use during pregnancy go to: www.nofas.org.
If you are pregnant and using alcohol, contact the Healthy Start Program today for free, confidential support! 941-861-2905