Getting a diagnosis of FASD is not easy. Services are limited, some are funded and some you have to pay for yourself. Many diagnostic services in Ontario have waiting lists or only serve people from a certain area. To find diagnostic services near you, visit FASD Services Directory to search for Diagnostic Services or to contact
Making a diagnosis of FASD requires a multidisciplinary team and involves a complex physical and neurodevelopmental assessment. The 2016 Canadian Diagnostic Guidelines for FASD provide the basis for a FASD diagnosis (Cook et al., 2016).
Benefits of a diagnosis:
- Identifies strengths and weaknesses – will help a person with FASD get help in difficult areas and
If you have concerns about your child, it is important to discuss them with your health or social service provider especially if you know or suspect that there was alcohol exposure during pregnancy. An early diagnosis can improve the outcome of people with FASD especially if it comes with appropriate supports and services.
A diagnosis of
Using alcohol if you are breastfeeding does not cause FASD. It is caused only by alcohol exposure during pregnancy. If you drink alcohol before or during breastfeeding, alcohol does pass into the breastmilk and to the baby. If you plan on drinking alcohol occasionally and you are breastfeeding, wait until your baby is at least
Many studies have been done on how we can reduce the incidence of FASD. The answer is not as simple as just telling women not to drink in pregnancy. It has been found that we need to use many strategies to lower rates of FASD:
- Awareness-raising activities about the dangers of drinking in pregnancy
Despite years of research, there is no safe level of alcohol consumption at any time in pregnancy. That’s why no alcohol consumption is recommended during pregnancy. If you are using alcohol, use reliable birth control to prevent an alcohol-exposed pregnancy. If you are trying to get pregnant or think you might be pregnant, stop using