Why are there no records of foetal alcohol syndrome before the 1800s?

As you know, I am a bit of a fan of history. But something has been bugging me for quite some time. Linking in with the recommendation in modern times to pregnant women that they don’t drink during pregnancy, why are there no records of foetal alcohol syndrome before the 1800s?

 

Until recently, water was contaminated, so people drank wine and ale instead, including pregnant women. And they probably consumed quite a bit of it every day. So, why are there no records of FAS before the 1800s? Where there FAS kids but they were never recorded? Where they quietly gotten rid of?

 

Could the use of alcohol partly explain the high rates of miscarriage, still birth and early infant death?

 

A conundrum, indeed…

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One thought on “Why are there no records of foetal alcohol syndrome before the 1800s?

  1. Interesting thoughts – something I’d never really thought about myself. We are all taught that people in the past never drank water as it was unsafe etc, so perhaps it was almost considered normal? I know the strength was much less than today so maybe that had something to do with it… I imagine no one ever thought to record it?

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