These days, there are few people who are not familiar, at least in passing, with Fetal Alcohol Disorders. High school health class, whispered insults, warning labels placed on every container of even mildly alcoholic substances – reminders like these, among others make it nearly inescapable. A woman who seems visibly pregnant and is drinking in public is apt to get a gamut of reactions, anywhere from disapproving stares to verbal confrontations over it. But even with this breadth of awareness, there is very little depth of understanding what exactly Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is or that is only one of a family of disorders that can result from exposing a fetus to alcohol during pregnancy.  


The disorders that make up the Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders are:

  • Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
  • Partial Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
  • Neurobehavioral Disorder Associated with Prenatal Alcohol Exposure
  • Alcohol Related Neurodevelopmental Disorder


Drinking During Pregnancy Causes Disabilities

Discovery InstituteThe National Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome states that consumption of alcohol during pregnancy is one of the largest causes of developmental disabilities and birth defects in the modern world. There are a variety of symptoms that can result from contact with alcohol in utero, ranging from physical impediments, mental health challenges, behavioral disorders, and learning disabilities. The severity of disorders can depend on the timing, frequency, and quantity of exposure to alcohol. These effects on the child are permanent, irreversible, and tragically  lifelong. Some of the ailments resulting from Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder can be treated with therapy and medication, but they are all chronic conditions:

  • Abnormal Facial Characteristics
  • Growth deficits
  • Brain damage including mental retardation
  • Defects of the lung
  • Defects of the kidney
  • Defects of the heart
  • Memory problems
  • Attention disorders
  • Difficulty managing judgement
  • Impaired reasoning
  • Learning disabilities
  • Motor skill delays
  • Coordination problems
  • Behavioral problems
  • Hyperactivity


Get Help at an Alcohol Rehab in NJ Before Endangering Your Unborn Child

Each year, tens of thousands of infants are born with a Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder. Drinking at any point while pregnant carries some risk – even in the days before the pregnancy is even detected. If someone waits until they get positive confirmation of their pregnancy before curtailing their drinking habits, the damage may already be done. That’s why it’s important to be intentional when you begin trying to become pregnant – if there’s potential for your future child to be conceived, then the responsible thing to do is cease drinking right then and there. If you suffer from an alcohol addiction and need help call Discovery Institute, one of the best new jersey rehab facilities available. We can answer your questions about treatment and help you find a healthy way through pregnancy and through your addiction.

Reviewed for Medical & Clinical Accuracy by Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MD

Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MDDr. Jeffrey Berman is a psychiatrist in Teaneck, New Jersey and is affiliated with Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital. He received his medical degree from State University of New York Upstate Medical University and has been in practice for more than 20 years. He also speaks multiple languages, including French and Hebrew.

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