Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
|Craniofacial features associated with fetal alcohol syndrome (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) is when an unborn fetus is affected by alcohol, resulting in physical, and mental defects. The most common effects from FAS include stunted growth, low birth weight, and developmental issues. It can affect behavior, mental development, and physical development. The only cause of FAS is alcohol, therefore it’s 100% preventable.
Binge drinking, excessive drinking, and chronic alcoholism increases the severity of FAS. Even drinking a small amount of alcohol can harm an unborn child.
There is no cure for FAS, so babies who are affected by this syndrome will have to live with the consequences of their mother’s drinking while pregnant. Some people affected by FAS will be able to live normal lives through treatments and training skills, while others will find it extremely challenging to live a regular life.
Research shows that when a mother drinks while pregnant, alcohol passes through the placenta from the mother’s blood into the baby’s bloodstream, which means the fetus has the same blood alcohol level as the mother. This is extremely dangerous, and can cause damage to fetus’ nervous system, and can kill, or stunt developing brain cells. It also blocks essential vitamins and nutrients from being absorbed. Alcohol reduces the amount of oxygen to the baby, leading to low birth weight, birth defects, and brain damage.
FAS may not be obvious at birth, but as the child grows, they may have a delay in development, behavioral problems, and poor coordination skills. Some children are misdiagnosed with ADHD, and may show signs of anxiety, restlessness, and frustration. This is because of FAS’s effect of their brain development.
If you are struggling with alcohol, now is the time to get help. FAS is completely preventable. Here at Synergy Group Services, we offer help to those in need through a specialized alcohol addiction treatment program. There is no judgement, only support for those who take the first steps into an addiction-free life. Mothers, or expecting mothers may find it difficult to ask for help because of the shame they may feel. However, there is no shame in asking for help, it’s courageous. Our holistic rehabilitation center will welcome you with open arms.