FASD – or Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder – is the leading preventable developmental disability in Canada. It’s a brain injury that can occur when an unborn baby is exposed to alcohol in the womb. This lifelong disorder has potentially far reaching effects, including physical, mental, behavioural and learning disabilities.
FASD can be difficult to diagnose and often goes undetected. The understanding of FASD is in a period of rapid expansion and change. Based on current studies and prevalence rates, FASD is thought to be a leading cause of developmental delays in children in Canada.
The best way to prevent FASD is to refrain from drinking alcohol while pregnant and to avoid alcohol in advance of getting pregnant as a precautionary measure.
To learn more, here are some additional resources:
Health Canada’s signs and symptoms of FASD
Health Effects of FASD
FASD Prevention Programs
Canada’s Low-Risk Drinking Guidelines