Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD)
If women drink alcohol when they are pregnant – especially if they binge drink— there is a high chance that their babies will be born with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD). Babies born with FASD can have brain damage and life-long physical, behavioural and learning disabilities.
In Nunavut today, FASD is one of the most serious and preventable alcohol-related harms. The Nunavut Department of Health and Social Services estimated in 2002 that 30% of pregnant women drink alcohol while pregnant, and 85% of these children show signs of FASD. The costs of FASD to society are also high. In addition to the major loss of quality of life for the children with FASD, they estimated that the health care costs associated with FASD over a lifetime are about $1.5 million per person with FASD.
There is no amount of alcohol or type of alcohol that is safe for a woman to drink while she is pregnant. Even a small amount of alcohol can harm the development of the baby.
For more information about alcohol and pregnancy, click here.