Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder can cause structural abnormalities in a child’s facial features, cause them to have problems with growth and learning and harm the development of the nervous system, including the brain.
With today dubbed International FASD Awareness Day, Bibra Lake resident and president of local group Breathe, Christine White, said while things were improving, Australia’s drinking culture did play a part.
‘With Australian culture, unless you’re having a drink, you’re not part of the in crowd and it is difficult to change the culture to adapt for the betterment of all families for things like domestic violence and FASD,’ she said.
‘As there are more and more children in society diagnosed, then maybe people are becoming more aware of it.
‘Years ago, there were lots of children that weren’t diagnosed with it particularly and only now are people realising the numbers that do have it.’
Ms White said the group advocated women totally abstain from alcohol during pregnancy and breast-feeding because it was a disease that was preventable, but not curable.
She said a male drinking up to three months before pregnancy could also be a factor, so couples actively trying to fall pregnant should both stay away from alcohol.
Visit www.facebook.com /BreatheWA or call Christine on 0448 589 519.