What is ARND?
ARND is a disorder found on the fetal alcohol spectrum. It stands for Alcohol Related Neurodevelopmental Disorder. When a person was exposed to alcohol in utero they often do not have any physical symptoms. Most of there disabilities come from the damage done to their developing brain and Central Nervous System. They can have learning difficulties and behavioral issues. It is often undiagnosed because of the lack of physical systems. To the casual observer they appear normal but in actuality they struggle with deficits and permanent brain damage as a legacy from their alcohol exposure in utero.

Alcohol-Related Neurodevelopmental Disorder.

by Anna Glendenning |
Brain Medical research consistently finds the development of the brain is most sensitive to the effects of prenatal alcohol and drug exposure. An unborn baby's brain is growing and developing the whole time his or her mother is pregnant. Alcohol exposure effects an unborn baby differently at different times depending on the timing of the exposure and the alcohol levels.

The brain is central to life, learning and behavior. Alcohol kills cells. If large amounts of alcohol are consumed and enough cells damaged a baby's brain is actually smaller. In recent research MRI and PET scans of people with FAS/ARND doctors have noted lesions and differences in the structure and function of the brain. Some tests have also discovered changes in the neurochemistry of brains with altered neurotransmitters and hormones. The average IQ for a full FAS is generally about 70 but people with ARND may have an "average" IQ and still have differences in the function of their brains. These differences of brain structure show up in a variety of ways.
Identification of FAS/ARND is to recognize there are changes in the structure of the brain and understand what this means behaviorally. When parenting an Alcohol effected child understanding these differences is key to understanding our children differently. Once we learn that our willful child is having challenges based on the changes in their brain our perception changes from seeing our child as one who will not mind a word we say, to one who possibly cannot mind the words they hear. Understanding these differences reduces some of the frustration and stress and increases the success we have parenting a child with FAS/ARND.
People with FAS/ARND have a difference in their brains, they have a physical disability Understanding that some behaviors are a symptom of a physical disability gives parents a chance to find effective parenting tactics. If the behavior symptoms are the result of a physical disability changing the behavior symptoms might be as effective as expecting a person with a broken leg to run a marathon.
It can be difficult to get a child diagnosed with any Alcohol related disorder because doctors are often reluctant to do so because it is one of few conditions where direct blame on another person is assumed. If you suspect a child you adopted has an alcohol related disorder search for information and find out if there is a medical facility in your area that is equipped to test and provide support for you and your children.

(Source: PARENTING Adoption - Online Website:familes.com)