Fetal alcohol syndrome, or FAS, is a condition that is caused by alcohol use during pregnancy. Doctors have repeatedly warned about the dangers of alcohol use during pregnancy. However, some women still choose to drink while they are pregnant. It is estimated that one in 750 babies in America are born with FAS.
Symptoms of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
There are a number of symptoms that a child may develop if he or she has FAS. Some of those symptoms include low birth weight, failure to thrive, small head circumference, facial abnormalities and epilepsy. The effects of FAS can be long-lasting. Children who have FAS are more likely to develop mental retardation. In fact, FAS is the top cause of mental retardation in children.
Children with FAS are at a greater risk for mental problems. They are also more likely to have problems in school. Furthermore, children with FAS may have problems holding down a job or living independently later in life.
Is any Amount of Alcohol Safe to Consume During Pregnancy?
Many mothers believe that it is safe to consume a small amount of alcohol during pregnancy. However, doctors recommend that women do not consume any alcohol while they are pregnant. Scientists have not determined how much alcohol a woman has to drink in order to have a baby with FAS. Everybody processes alcohol differently.
Some studies suggest that women who only consume one alcoholic beverage per day increase their risk of FAS. Every time that a woman drinks, the alcohol travels from her bloodstream to the placenta. The baby gets his or her nourishment through the placenta. A baby’s body breaks down alcohol at a slower rate than an adult’s. The best way to prevent FAS is to not consume any alcohol while you are pregnant.
Treatment for Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
There is no cure for Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. However, the earlier this condition is treated, the better the outcome will be for the child. It is best for a child to start treatment before going to preschool. Parents of children with FAS will typically have to work with a team that consists of psychologists, doctors, nurses and social workers.
How Inpatient Rehab can Prevent FAS
Many women have alcohol problems long before they get pregnant. A woman may not realize that she is pregnant during the first trimester. Because it only takes a small amount of alcohol to cause FAS, it is important for women with alcoholism to get treatment before they conceive a child.
Inpatient rehab is the best solution for dealing with alcoholism. People will be able to get high-quality care and treatment in an inpatient rehab center.