Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, also known as FAS, is arguably one of the worst repercussions of alcohol addiction imaginable. Here’s everything that expectant mothers need to know about the condition, its impacts, and the best treatments for both parent and child.

What Is Fetal Alcohol Syndrome?

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is a health condition that can occur in a child whose mother consumed alcohol during pregnancy. It is the worst syndrome in a wider group of alcohol-related issues known collectively as Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASDs), and it may harm the infant in several ways with life-lasting impacts.

What is Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
FAS symptoms

Symptoms of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

FAS can cause a range of physical, mental, and emotional complications during the child’s development. While symptoms and severity levels can vary from one infant to the next, the most common signs include;

Slow physical growth during pregnancy and after birth
Abnormal facial features like small eyes, upturned nose, or smooth ridge between the nose and lip
Deformity of joints and limbs, as well as small head circumference
Defects with the heart, kidneys and bones
Visual or hearing impairments
ADHD, poor social skills, difficulties with change, and a poor grasp of time
Poor coordination and balance
Mood swings and rapid behavioral changes
Poor memory skills
Associated learning disabilities

Not all children with FAS will display all symptoms while many individual signs can be linked to other conditions. Nonetheless, when the above issues are displayed in the infant, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome may be diagnosed as the cause.

What Causes Fetal Alcohol Syndrome?

In short, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is caused by the mother’s alcohol consumption during pregnancy. Not every woman who drinks during pregnancy will cause FAS in their child. However, it is also impossible to tell how much (if any) is a safe amount to drink in relation to a child’s vulnerability to the condition.

FAS (and FASD as a whole) is not usually a term used in clinical circles as there is no way to test for it via blood examinations or scans. Nonetheless, a doctor can look for physical abnormalities, developmental issues, and Central Nervous System problems even without the mother’s admission of alcohol addiction or consumption during pregnancy.

Causes of FAS
Treatments for FAS

What Are The Treatments For FAS?

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is a lifelong condition that has no known cure. However, a variety of treatments are available to support the infant throughout childhood and into their adult life.

The most effective treatments focus on the individual’s symptoms. The most likely solutions include:

Medications for physical and social symptoms
Behavioral and educational therapy
Special education and schooling services
Behavioral treatment for parents
Creating stable surroundings

An early diagnosis is the best way to ensure a child receives the best level of support, along with tailored care. If you suspect your child has FAS or any form of FASD, you should speak to a doctor ASAP.

How To Prevent Your Child From Getting Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

Prevention is the best form of protection for any child. Staying sober during pregnancy is the only way to support your child from FAS, as well as a host of additional health conditions.

Pregnancy is the perfect motive for quitting your alcohol addiction too. So, if you are thinking of starting a family in the future, now is the time to break free from your dependence. Peaks Recovery has an inpatient rehab, as well as a medical detox that will benefit both you and your future children. To find out more, get in touch today.