Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Diagnosis, America discussed on The Addicted Mind Podcast


Okay, so let's jump in and talk about what is fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. What do we see? What are they look like? How do we know that? So FASD is an umbrella term that kind of goes over multiple different disorders. Okay. So the most probably commonly heard FAC is FAS. Fetal alcohol syndrome. So that is, I guess, the most popular one that people hear of, but it is the least prevalent. Right. So with fetal alcohol syndrome, part of the way that that is diagnosed is specifically by looking at, they call them phenotypes, but for the non science brain people, facial features. So there are some key facial features that are used in diagnosing that. Along with evidence of prenatal alcohol exposure and evidence of central nervous system abnormalities. So looking at the structure and the function of the brain to see how that's working. So with the facial features, the prenatal alcohol exposure and the central nervous system that is how they will make a fetal alcohol syndrome diagnosis. 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That's HelloFresh dot com slash addicted mine 65 and use code addicted minds 65 or 65% off plus free shipping. All right, let's get back to the interview. So they'll be able to look at that and be able to see that. And then from there, be able to make that diagnosis. What are some of the factors that increase the risk of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders? Factors that increase the risk. So the amount of alcohol that is being used by the pregnant person and it depends on when that alcohol is being used also. So for example, with fetal alcohol syndrome, the least prevalent of all the FASD, those facial features only show up between day 19 and 21 of gestation. So it's that if that pregnant person is not consuming alcohol from day 19 to 21, that baby may not have the facial features for an FAS diagnosis. And so there's like, in the FASD world, people get very upset about facial features because it's such a small window. And a lot of providers will just write it off, that child doesn't have the facial features, so they're not even going to consider any other essays. So day 19 to 21 for those facial features, but the brain is still developing, we know, throughout the entire pregnancy. So the brain can still be affected in different ways depending on when that alcohol is consumed during the pregnancy that baby just may not have those facial features exhibited. Other risk factors, so general health of the mother nutrition, social determinants in prevention, we talk a lot about social determinants of health. So the community they live in, the support system they have, their financial situation, do they have health insurance? Also previous diagnosis of an FASD. Right, okay. Okay. So we can see that this can be diagnosed. And then once it's diagnosed, what do we do? What happens? What does a person do? So early intervention is key. So the CDC does have some programs that they recommend that they have on their website that I can share the resources with you too. But there's no cure. So there's no magic medication or magic pill, there are interventions that we can direct individuals to that will help. But it's not curable. It's treatable and manageable. I will say. So if some of the common things after diagnosis would be cognitive behavioral therapy, looking at the strength that that individual has and focusing on those, there's some new research coming out of Canada that's specifically about the strengths of an individual with an FASD. But the earlier that that FASD is identified for that individual, the better because the sooner we can get them into some of those interventional programs, the higher the likelihood they will have less challenges in the future. So one statistic I commonly bring up when I do trainings for Indiana, individuals with FASD are more likely to have contact with law enforcement, 60% of individuals with FASD will come in contact with law enforcement at some point during their life. And 35% will be incarcerated. Wow, that is a lot. Yeah, and so some of that is related to some of the FASD symptoms. So like impulsivity, right? The inability to critically think about consequences of your actions. And so the average child with FASD begins their contact with law enforcement between age 12 and 13. So, you know, think back to when you were 12, you know, did you have a good concept of even what was right and wrong. And then add neurodiverse brain on top of that where you are not able to determine what the consequences of your actions are going to be, that is why it's more common to see individuals with FASD in the criminal justice system

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