What are Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders?

Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) are a group of conditions that can happen when a baby's mother drinks alcohol while pregnant. There are many ways a baby could be impacted by his or her mother's alcohol consumption while pregnant, including:

  • Physical conditions; 

  • Low IQ; 

  • Difficulty with attention, behavior and judgment skills; and

  • Speech or language delays

Every person will experience Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders differently. 

Screening & Diagnosis

There is no one test or examination that leads to a diagnosis of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders. Many times, a pediatrician will look at the following to determine a diagnosis of FASD:

  • Abnormalities with facial features; 

  • Stunted growth; 

  • Cognitive impairments; 

  • Behavior, such as hyperactivity; and

  • Issues with central nervous system functioning. 

After the Diagnosis

After a diagnosis, it is important to seek help early. Early intervention services help children with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders learn new skills that will be critical to their development. Find support through family, friends and online support programs. 


Early intervention services are key for children experiencing Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders. Other interventions include behavioral therapies and medical treatments. 


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© 2023 by The Arc of Northern Shenandoah Valley. 

Tel: 540-692-9650

Email: shenvalleyarc@gmail.com

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