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Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) is an umbrella term for a range of physical, developmental, learning and behavioral disabilities that can result when mothers consume alcohol while pregnant. An estimated 1 in 100 babies are affected by an FASD each year–slightly higher than the rate of Autism. FASD is the leading preventable cause of birth defects and developmental and behavioral disabilities.
The Council on Chemical Abuse disseminates informational brochures about FASD, particularly during September, which is FASD Awareness Month.
Maternal Recovery Services – Interventions to support recovery, linking pregnant and parenting women to community resources.
The U.S. Surgeon General announced in 2005 that no amount of alcohol is safe to drink during pregnancy.
No. When a pregnant woman consumes alcohol, it enters her blood stream and is passed on to her child. This can occur at any point during a baby’s development.
A woman should stop drinking when she begins trying to get pregnant. Otherwise, she risks unintentionally exposing the baby to alcohol before she is aware that she’s pregnant.
Women of childbearing age who are sexually active and not using contraception, could get pregnant and unintentionally expose the baby to alcohol. Talk to your health care provider about using contraception regularly.
It’s important for a woman to let her health care provider know. Because brain growth takes places throughout pregnancy, the sooner a woman stops drinking, the better it is for her baby.
Because every pregnancy is different, drinking alcohol may affect one baby more than another. It is always important to share concerns about alcohol consumption during pregnancy with a health care provider.
There is no cure, but FASD is 100 percent preventable when women do not consume alcohol during pregnancy.