Parenting · Pregnancy

FASD: What is it?

“I know that it’s not good to drink during pregnancy, but will one small drink hurt my baby?”

This is one of the most common questions that I’m asked as a Public Health Nurse. September is Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) month and September 9th has been designated as International Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder Awareness Day. Once again, the Toronto FASD Network will be promoting the Red Shoes Rock campaign to raise awareness about FASD.

FASD is 100% preventable.

FASD is a term that describes a range of physical, mental, behavioural and learning disabilities that can affect individuals whose birth mother drank alcohol during pregnancy. FASD is a lifelong disability that has no cure.  If a pregnant woman drinks alcohol during pregnancy then her baby may be born with permanent brain damage.

The safest choice in pregnancy is not to drink any alcohol at all.

There is no safe amount or safe time to drink alcohol during pregnancy or when planning a pregnancy. This includes liquor, beer, wine or coolers. Mocktails are a great alternative. It’s not too late to make a positive change. Even if you are thinking about planning a pregnancy, it’s best to stop drinking alcohol.

Join us in raising awareness about FASD. Be safe and have an alcohol-free pregnancy.

If you or your partner are concerned about alcohol use speak to your health care provider.  You can also eChat or speak with a Public Health Nurse at (416) 338-7600.

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