They say that our children are our future, and it’s true. But ironically, children can’t give us a brighter future if we don’t invest in their future first.
Unfortunately, this is an area that we are starting to lack in. Statistics released by the research group, Child Trends, suggest that we aren’t paying enough attention to the safety of our children. Nowadays, young children face an increasingly dangerous range of health and social issues, including bullying, physical assault, health, poverty and drug abuse. One of the biggest dangers a child may face is being born with a drug or alcohol addiction, because the child’s mother used substances during her pregnancy.
Being born with a drug or alcohol addiction can create serious health, mental and developmental hurdles for babies. Our children are our future, and we need to start making sure they have a great future from their very first breath on.
In the series of ads below, titled “They Are More Like You Than You Think,” you’ll see exactly what kind of effect an adult’s decision can have on a child – specifically, how a drug or alcohol addicted mother can negatively impact her child. The ads include images of children drinking alcoholic beverages, sleeping with needles and “popping pills.” It’s uncomfortable and unnatural to see a baby holding a margarita, and it’s just as unnatural for a baby to be addicted to alcohol.
By creating these ads, our aim is to make a difference and create awareness of the effects of drug and alcohol on our youth. Drugs and alcohol aren’t only an adult problem: they’re also playing a dangerous role in our children’s lives.
Here’s a list of the facts for each ad:
- 7 Million children under 18 in the U.S. have alcoholic parents.
- If you’re addicted to alcohol during pregnancy, they will be too.
- 80% of babies born to heroin-addicted mothers are born addicts. Like mommy, like baby.
- Infants exposed to cocaine are at risk of having developmental problems like cerebral palsy, seizure disorder and mental retardation.
- After they’re exposed to months of painkillers in the womb, babies experience violent withdrawal symptoms.
- Exposing a fetus to alcohol increases the child’s risk of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).
- For children who have their first drink at 12 years of age, the prevalence of lifetime alcohol dependence is 41%.
- Children of alcoholics are 4 times more likely to develop a drinking problem.
- Underage kids see 45% more alcohol ads than legal drinking adults.
- 40,000 babies are born with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome each year.
- Fetal Alchol Syndrome has risen 50% in the last three years.
- Alcohol withdrawal for a baby begins just hours after birth and can last up to 18 months.