Consuming alcohol during pregnancy can lead to birth defects and developmental issues for a new baby. To help parents have an alcohol-free pregnancy, Peel Public Health has a variety of creative and delicious mocktail recipes – along with valuable information and resources – at http://www.peelregion.ca/health/fasd/.
Sept. 9, 2012 is International Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Awareness day. This day seeks to educate and raise awareness of FASD.
“It is estimated that one in every 100 children born in Canada has some form of FASD, as the result of alcohol consumption during pregnancy,” said Anne Fenwick, Director, Peel Public Health and member of the Peel FASD Initiative. “Choosing to not drink alcohol during pregnancy is one of the most important decisions you can make for the health of your child.”
Research indicates there is no known safe level of alcohol consumption for pregnant women. There is also no safe time to drink alcohol during pregnancy.
“There are a lot of misconceptions about alcohol and pregnancy. However, research states that it is safest for women who are, or may become pregnant to abstain from alcohol completely,” says Fenwick.
FASD describes a range of disabilities that can affect people who are exposed to alcohol prenatally. Disabilities can include brain damage in a developing fetus, vision and hearing problems, slow growth, heart problems, and bones that are not properly formed. Children affected by FASD may experience developmental delays, learning disabilities and attention and memory problems. Over 30,000 people in the GTA alone are estimated to be affected by FASD.
“Friends, families and partners can support women in keeping their pregnancies alcohol free,” says Fenwick. “Offering alternative beverages, being receptive to emotional needs and abstaining personally from alcohol are all ways to help.”
For more information on FASD, resources for pregnant women of new parents, and delicious mocktail recipes, visit: http://www.peelregion.ca/health/fasd/.