9th day of the 9th month - Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Awareness Day

September 9th is International FASD Awareness Day.  The month and day were selected to highlight the 9 months of pregnancy which are a time when a women should abstain from drinking alcohol.  The first FASD Awareness Day was first celebrated on September 9th, 1999.

According to the Public Health Agency of Canada, “it is estimated that FASD affects approximately one percent of the Canadian population.”

FASD is preventable by avoiding alcohol during pregnancy and education is the key.  If a woman is pregnant or is planning to become pregnant in the near future, she should not drink alcohol.  No amount or type of alcohol is considered safe.  There are many organizations and associations that support FASD prevention and awareness.

To name a few:

FASD Ontario

FASworld.com

Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse

Canadian Foundation on Fetal Alcohol Research

Motherisk.org

Public Health Agency of Canada

You can learn more about the founders of International Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) Awareness Day in this clip by CBC news. The feature starts in at 17 minutes.

Another handy piece of information to know of is Canada’s new guidelines for Low-Risk Alcohol Drinking

A few Resources:

Be Safe: Have an Alcohol-free Pregnancy - printer-ready handouts – available in 11 languages!

Brochure: Aboriginal Pregnancy and Alcohol

Great alcohol-free drink recipes: Mocktails for Mom

Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder  - Health Canada

Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder  - CPS Canada

Some American institutions have created an Awareness Day Packet that contains some information that you can distribute and share.