Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Treatment in Midland Park, NJ
Fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) is a mental condition that affects a child’s mental development both in utero and after birth. FAS is now part of a spectrum of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD), meaning it's part of a condition that can present with varying degrees of severity. The defining principle, however, is the same, damage done to a child’s cognitive ability when the mother drinks alcohol during pregnancy.
The Basics of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
Fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) is the most severe of all the fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. FAS is characterized by physical abnormalities and deformations including wideset or narrow-set eyes, growth issues, short nose, flattened cheeks, central nervous system issues, and—in some cases—hearing issues. Most prominent, however, are the following cognitive issues associated with FAS and FASD:
- Delayed gross and fine motor skills
- Language/speech impairment
- Memory issues
- Attention issues (can precipitate the development of ADD
- Impulsiveness (conduct disorder can result from FASD as well)
- Learning issues
All of these symptoms and the condition itself can be entirely prevented. Drinking alcohol during pregnancy—any amount—has been shown to increase the chance your newborn will have fetal alcohol syndrome.
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Treatment
While fetal alcohol syndrome is not curable, though various treatments are available to ease the burden of living with this condition. Early detection is best, not because the condition progresses, but rather because adaptive strategies if adopted early in life, will take less effort to master. Children are more adaptable than adults, teaching them coping strategies early can help them in the long run. Special education, test taking aids, and so on have been proven effective in helping children with FAS.
Therapy, like cognitive behavioral therapy can also help those with FAS, and the families of those with the syndrome. Raising a child with fetal alcohol syndrome can be a challenge, requiring extra amounts of special care and attention. The teenage years can be especially difficult. Therapy can help educate families on ways to better cope with the situation.
Those with FAS are also far more susceptible to persuasion than others, couple that with the propensity to openly display a temper, and the results could be drastic. Many with FAS have problems with the law as a result of their increased inhibitions. Therapy can help instill impulse reduction techniques and behavioral boundaries.
Despite all this, FAS is not a lost cause. While the severity can vary, with the proper care and therapy, many with FAS can and do lead independent lives.
Request more information about fetal alcohol syndrome today. Call (201) 806-6099 or contact Dr. M.T. Shahab online.
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