- The brain is a physical organ like the heart and kidneys.
- Alcohol, other teratogens, and trauma kill cells in the brain of developing fetuses.
- Alcohol also alters the structures of cells, reducing myelination and the number of interconnections among cells. Changes at the cellular level alter how cells function and communicate. These and other changes affect memory storage and retrieval, processing speed, ability to abstract, analyze, make decisions, and contribute to other behavioural symptoms.
- Since these are physical changes, Fetal Alcohol / Neurobehavioural conditions are by definition brain-based, invisible, physical disabilities with behavioural symptoms.
What are the Behavioural Characteristics of Students with FASD?
Who could benefit from the Fetal Alcohol/Neurobehavioural Approach
These are students who could benefit from the Fetal Alcohol / Neurobehavioural Approach
Primary: Direct brain damage that a person is born with. The student cannot control these neurodevelopmental behavioural characteristics.
Secondary: Characteristics that emerge as a result of not addressing the primary characteristics effectively. They are caused by a poor fit between expectations and the environment.
Tertiary: Characteristics that develop as a result of not addressing the secondary characteristics (e.g., difficulty with the family, the community, school and legal system because the student has had so much trouble with school). These effects tend to be complex, costly and challenging to manage. Tertiary Effects may also be called Adverse Effects.