Sept. 9 is Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Awareness Day. This year, we want to stress more profoundly the importance of "no alcohol during pregnancy." Recently, the media have given controversial attention to Danish studies that suggest moderate alcohol use during pregnancy is not unsafe for the fetus. The U.S. medical community is persistent in the warning that there are great risks in prenatal alcohol exposure.
The following statistics are from one of many U.S. studies. This study was based on 2,600 children who received a diagnostic evaluation for FAS in The Washington State FAS Diagnostic and Prevention network clinics during the past 18 years:
One out of seven children diagnosed with FAS had a reported prenatal exposure of one to eight drinks per week.
Half of the children with FAS had developmental score in the normal range as preschoolers, but all had severe brain dysfunction confirmed by age 10.
Only 10 percent of the children with FAS had attention problems by age 5, but 60 percent had attention problems by age 10.
Only 30 percent of the children with FAS have an IQ below normal, but 100 percent had severe dysfunction in other areas like language, memory and activity level.
Bottom line is: To have the healthiest child, quit drinking before you get pregnant. If you can't quit, get help by calling 1-877-846-7369
HFM Prevention Council