When a pregnant woman drinks alcohol, so does her unborn baby. Alcohol in the mother's blood passes through the placenta to the baby through the umbilical cord. Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) is an umbrella term describing the range of effects that can occur in an individual whose mother drank alcohol during pregnancy. These effects may include physical, mental, behavioral and/or learning disabilities with possible lifelong implications. FASD is completely preventable. However, thousands of babies are born with an FASD each year.
To help increase awareness of FASD and its life-long effects, the State of Ohio created a task force in 2003, which is composed of several state agencies, prevention professionals, educators and parents or caregivers of children with an FASD. The task force promotes abstaining from alcohol during pregnancy to prevent FASD, urging women not to drink a single drop.
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Karen Kimbrough, OhioMHAS
Alexis Martin, Ohio Department of Health