Frequently Asked Questions

What is FASD?
FASD stands for Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders. It refers to the effects on children’s development that can occur when alcohol is consumed during pregnancy. Conditions that fall into the category of FASD may include learning or behavior disabilities, and sometimes physical effects such as smaller growth or characteristics facial features.

Is that like Fetal Alcohol Syndrome?
Yes, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) is a birth defect under the heading of FASD. FASD also includes other classifications.

How do I know if a child has FASD?
A clinical diagnosis by a multidisciplinary team is the best way to find out.  If that is not possible right away, talk with a mental health provider who understands the effects of prenatal alcohol exposure. 

What is Families Moving Forward?
The Families Moving Forward (FMF) Program is a positive parenting intervention designed to help families raising children between 3 and 13 years old who have behavior problems… and FASD (or were heavily alcohol-exposed). 

Tell me more about Families Moving Forward.
The FMF Program model is a behavioral consultation intervention that combines a positive behavior support (PBS) approach with motivational interviewing and other scientifically-validated treatment techniques.

How do I know if a child might benefit from the Families Moving Forward Program?
This checklist can also help. Remember, a child exposed to alcohol before birth who has developmental or learning difficulties may benefit from strategies useful for children with FASD... even if prenatal alcohol exposure cannot be confirmed.

Who delivers the FMF Program?
The FMF intervention is delivered individually to families by FMF Specialists who have received training and have access to consultation. FMF Specialists are usually mental health professionals, but could also be child development experts, experienced family advocates, or some other kind of specialist.

How does FMF work?
The caregiver meets with the specialist for a series of coaching sessions addressing issues involved with raising children with FASD or affected by prenatal alcohol exposure. Each session lasts about 90 minutes and the overall program lasts 9-11 months. The session topics are designed to be addressed in a particular order, but the sessions can also be customized to suit the needs of individual families.

What are the principles used in the FMF Program?
FMF is based on the idea that children with FASD have brain-based difficulties -- neurological impairments -- that are the underlying cause of many learning and behavioral problems. Caregivers learn concepts such as "reframing" and "accommodations" which help them change their own attitudes and how they manage the child, which leads to improvements in the child's behavior.

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