Sample Critical Thinking paper on Alcohol Use during Pregnancy is Harmful

Introduction

Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) refers to birth defects among babies caused by the mother’s drinking habits. A birth mother should not engage in alcohol consumption during pregnancy as it interferes with the baby’s physical, behavioral, mental, and learning abilities. When the alcohol crosses into the baby’s blood system, it can damage the fetus’s brain development stages leading to FASDs (DHHS, 2014).

Statistics

The annual reported rates of FASDs in the United States affirm more than forty thousand children are affected. Native American tribes however report higher rates as fifteen to twenty-five children in a group of ten thousand newborns are affected. This rate is compared to the five to twenty-live births in a group of ten thousand children born by American citizens. When the statistics are combined, at least one hundred per ten thousand live births are adversely affected (CDCP, 2014).

Preventive Measures

These statistics however can be reduced. More so, parents can undertake measures to prevent FASDs. Foremost, mothers trying to get pregnant or actually expectant should avoid consuming alcohol. It is also advisable to avoid consuming alcohol and engaging in unprotected sex as it increases the chances of getting pregnant. No amount of alcohol is safe for an unborn baby. Thus, mothers ought to acknowledge binge or heavy drinking is harmful to unborn babies. Conversely, fathers can also assist in preventing FASDs. Although science has not provided prove a father’s drinking habits before conception can attribute to FASD, it indicates it can adversely affect the fetus genes. Through epigenetics, a father engaging in alcohol consumption can inhibit the development of high-quality genes in the baby for generations. Thus, both parents should avoid alcohol altogether (DHHS, 2014).

 

References

Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDCP). (2014). Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASDs), CDC’s National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities.

Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). (2014). Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders: Frequently Asked Questions about FASD, Biology of Reproduction Report.