ARND is a disorder found on the fetal alcohol spectrum. It stands for Alcohol Related Neurodevelopmental Disorder. When a person was exposed to alcohol in utero they often do not have any physical symptoms. Most of there disabilities come from the damage done to their developing brain and Central Nervous System. They can have learning difficulties and behavioral issues. It is often undiagnosed because of the lack of physical systems. To the casual observer they appear normal but in actuality they struggle with deficits and permanent brain damage as a legacy from their alcohol exposure in utero.
Alcohol-Related Neurodevelopmental Disorder.by Anna Glendenning |
Medical research consistently finds the development of the brain is most sensitive to the effects of prenatal alcohol and drug exposure. An unborn baby's brain is growing and developing the whole time his or her mother is pregnant. Alcohol exposure effects an unborn baby differently at different times depending on the timing of the exposure and the alcohol levels.
No two people with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) or Alcohol-Related Neurodevelopmental Disorder (ARND) are the same. Two different mothers drinking similar amounts of alcohol may have children with completely different effects. Not all alcoholic mothers have baby's with FAS or ARND, and some social drinkers have children who do.
Identification of FAS/ARND is to recognize there are changes in the structure of the brain and understand what this means behaviorally. When parenting an Alcohol effected child understanding these differences is key to understanding our children differently. Once we learn that our willful child is having challenges based on the changes in their brain our perception changes from seeing our child as one who will not mind a word we say, to one who possibly cannot mind the words they hear. Understanding these differences reduces some of the frustration and stress and increases the success we have parenting a child with FAS/ARND.
People with FAS/ARND have a difference in their brains, they have a physical disability Understanding that some behaviors are a symptom of a physical disability gives parents a chance to find effective parenting tactics. If the behavior symptoms are the result of a physical disability changing the behavior symptoms might be as effective as expecting a person with a broken leg to run a marathon.
It can be difficult to get a child diagnosed with any Alcohol related disorder because doctors are often reluctant to do so because it is one of few conditions where direct blame on another person is assumed. If you suspect a child you adopted has an alcohol related disorder search for information and find out if there is a medical facility in your area that is equipped to test and provide support for you and your children.
(Source: PARENTING Adoption - Online Website:familes.com)