Prenatal Substance Exposure

While tragic and unfortunate, early exposure to substances is not a one-size fits all. Every child has a unique prenatal history and story. Substance exposure does not mean a child cannot grow happily and healthily. However, it likely means that a child will need extra patience, behavioral supports, and compassion around learning differences or sensory needs that change over time. As with all children, building and maintaining strong, nurturing caregiver relationships is vital to success. Please reference our Early Childhood, Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders, Sensory Supports, Neurodiversity and Substance Use/Addictions pages for more resources.

"Prenatal exposure to maternal substances of abuse can have a devastating effect on the long-term outcome of children. However... it is impossible to differentiate the detrimental effects of any one specific drug from that of any other. In this light, it is vital that we understand that the home environment is the critical determinant of the child’s ultimate outcome." ~ Dr. Ira Chasnoff, substance exposure expert

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