Public Awareness Campaigns

Pregnancy Announcement

Through a new advertising campaign, “Pregnancy Announcement,” the Minnesota Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (MOFAS) will raise awareness about alcohol use during the critical period of a pregnancy where a woman may not even know she is pregnant yet.

Each year in Minnesota, an estimated 7,000 babies are born with prenatal alcohol exposure that puts them at risk for Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD). FASD represents a range of mental, physical, and behavioral effects that permanently impact an individual’s ability to function in home, school, work, and community. Despite best efforts, FASD is still the leading known cause of developmental disability.

Prenatal exposure to alcohol continues to take place in Minnesota for a range of reasons:

  • 45% of pregnancies in Minnesota are unplanned, so women could be continuing to drink alcohol and not be unaware they are pregnant;
  • 1 in 5 women in Minnesota do not receive any message about alcohol use from their doctor, or are told they can drink lightly or in moderation; and
  • Women may be dealing with chemical dependency and addiction during their pregnancy.

The goal of the “Pregnancy Announcement” campaign is to empower women in Minnesota with accurate information on the dangers of alcohol use during early pregnancy, and to encourage all women who are pregnant or may be pregnant to practice “049” – zero alcohol for nine months.

Below are links to media resources. Please contact Sara Messelt, sara@mofas.org or 651-917-2370 – with any questions.

The Hope

FASD is preventable if a woman does not drink alcohol while pregnant. Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) is a range of effects resulting from prenatal alcohol exposure that may include physical, mental, behavioral, and/or learning disabilities. This can include growth deficiencies, facial abnormalities, brain impairment, behavioral disorders, and impaired intellectual development. These alcohol-related birth defects are lifelong and irreversible once they occur, but are preventable if a woman does not drink alcohol during her pregnancy. If you are struggling to quit drinking during pregnancy, MOFAS has resources to help.

The Mom to Be

There is no safe level of alcohol use during pregnancy. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), S. Surgeon General, American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and American Academy of Pediatrics consistently advise pregnant women not to drink any alcohol at all. Some medical providers go outside of this clear guidance, but the fact is that no amount of alcohol has been proven safe. Every drink is a risk. There is also no safe kind: Alcohol is alcohol. Beer, liquor, wine, spirits, and other types of alcohol are all equally harmful to the developing baby. All types of alcohol can cause permanent damage. Find answers to common questions like these.

He’ll Get Over It – Others Won’t

Alcohol use during pregnancy is the leading cause of developmental disabilities. While it can be prevented, there is no cure for Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD). FASD can’t be cured, but it can be accommodated. With early diagnosis and intervention after prenatal alcohol exposure, we can better identify and support the needs of families. Early screening can greatly improve school success and future life outcomes for these young children. If you believe you or someone you love may have been prenatally exposed to alcohol, find out more information about screening and diagnosis.

OMG

Alcohol can harm a baby before a woman knows she is pregnant. Half of all pregnancies are unplanned, and many women do not know they are pregnant for 4-6 weeks after conception. Important brain development occurs during this time frame, so it is important to understand the dangers of drinking during pregnancy and be able to modify health habits, like drinking alcohol, before you actually become pregnant. If you are the mother of a child that was prenatally exposed to alcohol and you would like to connect with other moms, please contact Catie Triviski atctriviski@mofas.org to learn more about available support groups. Find more answers to common questions about drinking during pregnancy.

Overwhelmed

Each year in Minnesota over 7,000 babies are born with prenatal alcohol exposure. MOFAS works to ensure that all women know that there is no safe time, no safe kind, and no safe amount of alcohol during pregnancy. FASD is common. Here in Minnesota, more than 7,000 babies are born each year with prenatal alcohol exposure. Research has found that 1 in 10 pregnant women report alcohol use. FASD is costly. FASD costs Minnesota $131 million each year for education, juvenile justice, and medical and mental health services. FASD is preventable. 1 in 5 women in Minnesota did not receive any message about alcohol use from their doctor or were told they could drink lightly or in moderation. There is much room for improvement in raising awareness about the dangers of drinking alcohol during pregnancy. Remember “049” – zero alcohol for nine months. Learn more about FASD and the impact it has on Minnesota.


 

Love Hope Joy

Our Love. Hope. Joy. public awareness campaign uses these three words that are inspiring, uplifting, and empowering. And often times, describes a mom-to-be’s emotions about her pregnancy and dreams for her child. View our Love. Hope. Joy. campaign.


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Copyright © 2017 Minnesota Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome | Photos by Amy Zellmer, Custom Creations Photography.

This site is provided to families and professionals as an informative site on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD). It is not intended to replace professional medical, psychological, behavioral, legal, nutritional or educational counsel. Reference to any specific agency does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by MOFAS.