Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Its Symtoms And Treatment.

1189 words - 5 pages

Our country is witnessing the significant impact alcohol-related birthdefects are having on our society. These birth defects are caused by maternal useof alcohol during pregnancy which are irreversible, yet preventable. According toThe National Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, "Fetal Alcohol Syndromeis the name given to a group of physical and mental birth defects that are the directresult of a woman's drinking during pregnancy." It impacts the family, educationsystem, health system and social services in general, as well as individual losses.Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is considered the most common known cause of mentalretardation in the Western World. There is no known cure for this disorder. FetalAlcohol Syndrome is the only cause of birth defects that are totally one hundredpercent preventable. Through education and intervention these defects can bestopped. In knowing how Fetal Alcohol syndrome can be prevented, what thesymptoms are, and who and what makes up the risk factors Fetal Alcoholsyndrome can be better understood. Americans need to consider the life of theirchildren, and need to learn about fetal alcohol syndrome, know its effects, and howto diagnose it. Let's begin by looking at education.Communities, schools, and concerned individuals can help to prevent FetalAlcohol Syndrome, through education and intervention. Special efforts should bedirected toward educating women, prior to and during the childbearing years,regarding the harmful effects of alcohol on the developing fetus. Major efforts atall levels of society should be made to develop quality educational programsregarding the deleterious consequences of alcohol on the unborn child. Theseprograms should be integrated into mandatory curriculum for all high schoolstudents. They should be a part of the educational curriculum in all post-secondaryand adult centers of learning. Pediatricians and other health professionals caringfor women and their newborns should increase their own awareness and that oftheir patients about Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and its' prevention. Pediatriciansshould increase their awareness of maternal alcohol exposures during pregnancy tohelp identify the possible cause of birth defects and to help identify other adversefetal outcomes in future pregnancies. Those infants and children who are thoughtto have Fetal Alcohol Syndrome should be evaluated by a pediatrician who isknowledgeable, skilled, and competent in the evaluation of neuro-development andpsychosocial problems. Otherwise, the necessity for a skilled evaluation requiresearly referral to a specialist in this area. If such problems are identified or if thechild is considered to be at risk for the later identification of developmentalproblems, referral should be made for early educational services available underthe provisions of the Education for All Handicapped Children Act (PL 94-142 andPL 99-457).The American Academy of Pediatrics supports federal legislation thatwould require the inclusion of...

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