Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Explained


Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) is a conglomeration of physical, emotional and cognitive disorders that people suffer as a result of early exposure (at fetal developmental stages during pregnancy) to alcohol. Pregnant women who indulge in alcohol risk having their babies experience improper or inadequate organ development, and, as a result, suffer physical and mental incapacitation later in life. Slowed mortal coordination, reduced concentration, abnormal facial and limb structures, as well impaired hearing and vision comprise some of the FAS symptoms.

The Effects Of Alcohol On Fetal Development

Adult human kidneys filter much of the consumed alcohol to limit the amount of alcohol that reaches vital organs. However, fetuses do not have well-developed kidneys, and as alcohol seeps from the mother to the fetus, through the placenta, the harmful alcohol ingredients hamper the proper development of the brain and other body organs. Typical FAS symptoms include impaired cognitive functions, poor social skills, heart and kidney problems, deformed fingers and other body organs, retarded growth, and hyperactivity.

FAS Treatment

Unfortunately, there is not much that can be done about some of the FAS symptoms such as facial deformities, head size, and other deformities except for their management. However, parents of FAS patients can adopt lifestyles that enable them accommodate FAS patients, as well as help them live fulfilling lives. Social and cognitive training can be provided to increase patients thought processes and social interactions. For instance, FAS affected children that suffer from reduced concentration, hence have reduced learning ability can have tutors and other educational coaches that can train them after school hours. Some drugs may be prescribed to manage anxiety, depression, and hyperactivity.

The consumption of alcohol by pregnant women affects fetal development and the future quality of life of FAS patients. Although FAS is irreversible, it is entirely preventable in that pregnant and aspiring mothers should stop their alcohol consumption before and during pregnancy. Some FAS symptoms can be managed, but others cannot be reversed or treated. We, A Calming Tide: Drug, Alcohol and Behavioral Resource, publish relevant information concerning FAS and other conditions, as well as addiction and rehabilitation information. Follow us for additional Addiction, Treatment, and Behavioral Health.