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Prenatal Development - Essay Example

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In the modern women's changing world, often an association is made between alcohol and fetus - to be exact, the use of alcohol during pregnancy and prenatal development. There have been several crucial research evidences which demonstrate the impact of prenatal maternal alcohol consumption on the damage of the developing fetus and the consequent difficulties to the children…
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Download file to see previous pages The paramount relevance of prenatal care in reducing infant deaths has been over and over again reported in studies and the connection between Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) and prenatal development corresponds, most obviously, to this factor. The impact of drug consumption during prenatal development is, therefore, highly perilous and the connection between prenatal development and FAS draws attention to the same danger. The relationship between prenatal development and Fetal Alcohol Syndrome offers one of the stimulating topics of profound analyses in the area and it is important in such analyses to determine when and how the fetus is affected. Therefore, this paper mulls over the various pertinent areas of the relationship between prenatal development and FAS in order to determine the proper utility of such analyses.
In a reflective analysis of the broader picture of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome in the modern world, one becomes aware of the immensity of the issue and the prenatal exposure to alcohol is the single most cause mental retardation in the US today. Important studies on prenatal development prove that the use of alcohol during this period have a venomous impact on the growing facial features, the central nervous system of the fetus, the growth rate and birth weight. "Alcohol consumption during pregnancy can result in full-blown fetal alcohol syndrome or a host of fetal alcohol effects that include a wide range of mild to severe cognitive, behavioral, and growth delays. Fetal alcohol syndrome occurs in about 1 of 750 births in the United States. Many thousands more are born with fetal alcohol effects." (Sloboda and Bukoski, p 330). In fact, the widely recognized human teratogen called alcohol has been the prime producer of FAS and the other related effects in children. Alcohol, among all the substances of abuse, is the most dangerous and serious manufacturer of neurobehavioral effects in the fetus. While the nature of the substance used in the prenatal development period has a vital role in causing Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, it is more imperative to analyze the timing of the exposure alcohol as it is a major variable influencing FAS.
As mentioned before, one of the most vital variables predicting the effect of the consumption of alcohol during the prenatal development has been the timing of the exposure to the substance. Thus, the exposure of the fetus to a substance can have different types if impact when it either coincides with or misses a period of peak sensitivity to the substance. "For example, fetal exposure to alcohol, even at relatively low doses, has its greatest impact on development if it occurs early in the first trimester or at any time during the third trimester. This is because the developing fetus has different periods of peak sensitivity to alcohol." (Sloboda and Bukoski, p 330). Therefore, it is vital to relate to the timing of the exposure alcohol when the fetus is affected the most in prenatal development.
The broad period of prenatal development is often divided into three periods for the sake of convenience, i.e. the pre-differentiation period, the period of the embryo, and the period of the fetus. In the total span of prenatal devel ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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