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Clearly you can say, Dont smoke during pregnancy no matter what youre smoking. But for the remainder, its the precautionary principle: Until we know more you probably shouldnt do it, McCormick summed up.
The NAS report drilled down into other health effects during pregnancy, like whether the babies of moms who used marijuana are more likely to wind up in the NICU or experience sudden infant death syndrome and cognitive and academic achievement challenges later in life. And on these important questions, it was equivocal: The researchers found limited, insufficient, or no evidence.
Still, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists say that there are no approved indications or recommendations regarding prenatal marijuana use even though the impact of prenatal cannabis use isnt yet fully understood.
Even so, Young-Wolff said. sufficient evidence an association between prenatal marijuana use and lower offspring birth weight, and limited research shows a correlation with some developmental delays or difficulties with executive functioning in the child like problems with impulse control and attention. And thats enough to make health professionals wary.
Smoking Weed During Pregnancy
Marijuana use during pregnancy isnt one of those gray areas in pregnancy where it should be mostly avoided, or where there are safer ways to do it. There arent smaller dosages that are considered acceptable either, and there are no known benefits that outweigh the risks of smoking weed.
The hard truth is that you really must refrain from smoking weed or using cannabis products throughout your entire pregnancy.
All major health organizations are in consensus about this, including the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the Academy of American Pediatrics . As ACOG explains it, marijuana use during pregnancy is a problem, whether smoked or ingested, because the chemicals found in marijuana have been found to reach both the fetus and placenta.
Dr. Jordan Tishler, an emergency room physician, president of the Association of Cannabis Specialists, and CEO of InhaleMD, agrees that smoking weed during pregnancy is something all mothers need to avoid, without exceptions.
Though an advocate of therapeutic cannabis usage for people who are not pregnant, Dr. Tishler says there are too many risks and unknowns at this time to recommend smoking weed during pregnancy. Additionally, he says, there are no benefits to smoking weed that cant be obtained from conventional medicine that is already known to be safe for pregnant women.
What You Need To Know About Marijuana Use And Pregnancy
- Using marijuana during pregnancy may impact your babys development.17
- About 1 in 20 women in the United States reports using marijuana while pregnant.8
- The chemicals in any form of marijuana may be bad for your baby this includes eating or drinking, creams or lotions applied to skin, smoking, vaping and dabbing.9
- If youre using marijuana and are pregnant or are planning to become pregnant, talk to your doctor.
Marijuana use during pregnancy can be harmful to your babys health. The chemicals in marijuana pass through your system to your baby and can harm your babys development.17
Although more research is needed to better understand how marijuana may affect you and your baby during pregnancy, it is recommended that pregnant women do not use marijuana.17
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Cannabis The Endocannabinoid System And Pregnancy
As a rule, patients taking medical cannabis instead of pharmaceutical drugs such as opioids, experience far fewer unpleasant side effects. But thats not to say that cannabis doesnt create some important biochemical changes in the body.
Key to this is the interaction between compounds in cannabis, in particular, THC, with the bodys endocannabinoid system . Made up of receptors in the brain and central nervous system and the immune system , which are activated by endogenous cannabis-like compounds which are incidentally found in mothers breast milk, the ECS is known as a homeostatic regulator, bringing balance across all biological function.
The fact that THC binds with CB1 receptors in the brain and central nervous system and can pass from the mother through the placenta to the developing fetus, throws up all sorts of questions about how this could affect the development of an unborn baby.
Conclusive evidence about the potential dangers of taking cannabis during pregnancy is scarce.
When Can I Resume Smoking Weed
You can safely resume smoking weed after your baby is born, with a few caveats.
First, as Dr. Tishler explains, if you are breastfeeding, its best to avoid smoking weed. Cannabinoids do get concentrated in breastmilk, he says.
The Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine explains that while data about the effects of cannabis exposure on infant development is sparse and conflicting, there is clear evidence that cannabis gets transferred into breast milk and absorbed by babies. In fact, tetrahydrocannabinol , one of the main components of weed, is present in breast milk at eight times the rate than in the plasma of moms who smoke it.
The other thing to keep in mind, says Dr. Jones, is that even if you arent breastfeeding, babies can be exposed to weed through secondhand smoke. As ABM shares, infant exposure to secondhand marijuana smoke has been associated with an increased risk of SIDS.
Finally, if you are smoking weed recreationally, you need to be sure that you are awake and alert enough to care for your infant if not, you should refrain from smoking or arrange alternative childcare.
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Can I Smoke Marijuana While I Am Pregnant
There is no known safe of amount of marijuana use during pregnancy. Using marijuana while pregnant can be harmful for the unborn baby. Marijuana that passes to your baby during pregnancy may make it hard for your child to pay attention and learn, especially as your child grows older. This could make school harder for them.
Benefits Of Smoking Weed During Pregnancy
At this time, there are no benefits to smoking weed during pregnancy, and any benefits that may be found are outweighed by the risk that smoking weed poses to you and your baby. Again, this is something that major medical organizations , as well as the doctors we consulted, are in clear agreement about.
Many mothers have heard that smoking weed or using cannabis helps with morning sickness. Dr. Jones says that there is no proof of t and that either way, smoking weed to treat morning sickness comes with too many risks. This has not been proven, and we recommend using safer options that can help with morning sickness or hyperemesis during pregnancy, says Dr. Jones.
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Is It Safe To Consume Edible Marijuana When Pregnant
According to Lean Plate ClubTM writer Sally Squires, research indicates that more pregnant women use marijuana in some manner. Marijuana is the most often used recreational substance when pregnant. Pregnant womens usage of marijuana rose from 2% to 4% between 2009 and 2016, according to Squires.
Due to the lack of odour and visibility, edibles are becoming more popular as a method of consuming cannabis. Additionally, many people believe that edible marijuana is safer and has fewer negative effects since it is healthier.
Even though marijuana is usually regarded harmless, the American Academy of Pediatrics warns there is no safe dose to consume while pregnant or nursing because of the lack of studies. Using marijuana while pregnant has been linked to low birth weight, preterm, and a higher risk of certain birth abnormalities, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics .
Consult your doctor about the effects if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or planning to become pregnant. There shouldnt be any judgment, Squires said. To that end, Squires cautions parents who use marijuana to keep their stash hidden from view and out of the hands of their children.
Childrens Focus And Academics
Six-year-old children whose mothers used marijuana on a daily basis during their first trimester had difficulty understanding concepts in reading and listening. Ten-year-old children who were exposed to the drug while in utero had difficulty focusing their attention and were more impulsive than other kids. Children whose moms heavily used marijuana during their first trimester had lower scores in math, reading and spelling than other kids.
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Why Marijuana Bump Science Is So Shaky
There are a few reasons why the research base on marijuana in pregnancy is so limited and inconclusive. Again, most of the evidence we have on weeds health impact on the fetus comes from research on smoking and there are many different ways people ingest cannabis nowadays, through edibles, oils, and vape devices to name just a few.
The THC content in weed has also shot up dramatically, which means it may be riskier to use while pregnant. So, as Young-Wolff of Kaiser told me, A lot of the research that has been done is quite old and doesnt reflect the current marijuana landscape or the THC levels in todays products.
The studies out there also tend to be small, without enough statistical power to accurately detect relationships they often rely on self-reported data, which is flawed when it comes to substance use. A lot of the research also didnt control for confounding factors or all the non-weed variables that may bias the results of studies.
Pregnant marijuana users often use other drugs in pregnancy, Young-Wolff explained, and prior studies havent been able to differentiate which effects are due to marijuana or other drugs they may be using.
Finally, the federal government still classifies marijuana as a Schedule 1 substance the same legal and regulatory league as heroin and that means researchers need to jump through all kinds of hoops to run studies.
*These names have been changed to protect the identity of the women.
What Is Medical Marijuana
Medical marijuana is sometimes used to treat certain health conditions, like cancer or severe pain. In many states, medical marijuana is legal to use with a recommendation from your health care provider. It can be smoked, vaped or eaten. The Food and Drug Administration has not approved marijuana as a safe and effective medicine for any health condition.
In some states, marijuana is legal for personal use thats not for medical reasons.
Even if its legal where you live for either personal or medical use, no amount of marijuana is safe to use marijuana during pregnancy, even to treat morning sickness. There is also no safe way to use marijuana. If youre thinking of using marijuana to help with morning sickness, talk to your provider about other treatments that are less harmful to your baby.
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Alternative To Medical Marijuana
Many people use marijuana and cannabis products to treat medical conditions such as chronic pain, multiple sclerosis, HIV, glaucoma, and irritable bowel syndrome. However, if you are planning to become pregnant, or are currently pregnant, you will need to stop using marijuana for medical purposes.
“, other arrangements will need to be made to address the medical concerns that were being treated with cannabis, explains Dr. Tishler. ACOG suggests that you talk to a medical provider and discuss alternative treatments that are safe during pregnancy.
How Cannabis Might Be Harmful Is Not Clear
The link between using cannabis during pregnancy and poorer neonatal outcomes could be related to the toxic compounds, such as carbon monoxide, produced when cannabis is smoked. This is similar to what we see with cigarette smoking and leads to a lower amount of oxygen reaching the baby.
Or it could be a direct effect of the compounds found in cannabis which we know can cross the placenta and reach the baby.
These active compounds, THC and CBD , influence a range of bodily functions, including in the brain. This is why people typically use recreational cannabis in the first place.
So when these compounds can reach the developing baby this raises a number of concerns about what they might do to growth and brain development.
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Risks Of Using Cannabis
Second-hand cannabis smoke can be harmful. It is safest not to smoke or vapourize cannabis at home or in a car.
Using cannabis daily, or almost daily, may have effects that last for several weeks, years or never fully go away, even after stopping use. Some people may have a higher risk of:
- Developing a mental health problem
- Having an existing mental health problem worsen
- Having psychotic episodes
More research is needed to clearly understand all the possible health effects of cannabis use.
Cannabis in foods or drinks can make people feel higher than expected. Because the effects of cannabis are not felt right away but can appear hours later, people may take more cannabis than they had planned.
- The body has to digest the cannabis before feeling the effects.
- The signs and symptoms can vary from mild to severe.
What This Means For You The Pregnant Mother
Although studies on cannabis and the growing fetus are still minimal, choosing to use medical marijuana is a serious decision. You should talk with your doctor before you use marijuana during your pregnancy or while youre breastfeeding.
Although roughly 50 percent of women marijuana users continue to use while pregnant, there is evidence that cannabis may hurt fetal neurodevelopment. The ACOG is asking OB-GYNs to urge their pregnant patients and those contemplating becoming pregnant to discontinue marijuana usage.
Is it okay to use marijuana while you are pregnant? You need to make the decision for yourself, and you should, like most decisions, weigh the benefits and the risks and consult with experts on the matter. The ACOG released a policy statement in 2015 urging women who are pregnant or breastfeeding to refrain from using marijuana.
The ACOG recommends the following:
You should receive regular check-ups by your physician even if youre using marijuana while youre pregnant. Dont let your drug use cause you to skip your doctor appointments. Prenatal visits are important to your health and the health of your baby. Prenatal care is essential during pregnancy, and you should also be honest about your drug use to your physician.
If youre considering smoking legal marijuana or already are while pregnant, talk with your gynecologist or doctor. Your doctor is not there to judge they are there to ensure you and your infant stay healthy.
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Are There Any Long
Medical experts and scientists believe that the effects of smoking marijuana during pregnancy may have an impact on a child’s brain development and behavior over time.
Studies have shown that toddlers and older children born to pot-smoking moms may not score as well on cognitive, memory and behavioral tests compared with other kids, and have a somewhat higher risk of impulse control issues, hyperactivity and inattention.
There have also been studies showing a link between marijuana use in pregnancy and lower scores on reading comprehension, spelling and math tests.
Are Edibles A Safer Alternative To Smoking
People often believe that “edibles” are a safer way to consume marijuana. But while there’s no smoking involved, Volkow said edibles have their problems.
“It takes longer for the effects of edibles to emerge, so people may keep taking more,” she said. They can end up consuming a THC dose large enough to land them in the emergency room.
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What Are The Effects Of Smoking Marijuana While Breastfeeding
Smoking marijuana while breastfeeding is not safe for your baby. THC builds up in breast milk as much as 8 times higher than in a mother’s bloodstream. THC is then absorbed into a baby’s bloodstream and can be stored in a baby’s fat tissue for weeks to months. THC also gets into a baby’s brain and can make a baby extra sleepy and not feed very well. It can also cause delays in a baby’s development.
Marijuana has also been shown to contain other dangerous substances, including toxins from pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers. These chemicals can also transfer through the breast milk.
Will They Take My Baby Away If I Test Positive For Drugs
The #1 question in peoples minds about marijuana during pregnancy
**First off, they will NOT take your baby away for taking pot during pregnancy, but in my state it does require a CPS call by us to notify them. CPS may or may not visit you, but they will have a record of it in their system. If you have questions about the requirements in your state, I would recommend you to ask your doctor.**
BTW, if youre doing marijuana and might be pregnant it is important to take a pregnancy test so you can STOP as soon as you are .
Of course, marijuana isnt the only type of drug that we are testing for in these screen. A positive drug test can come from many types of drugs. Many on the drug screen are taken more seriously by a social worker than marijuana b and at times you could have issues with child endangerment from law enforcement. Prenatal drug exposure is taken really seriously by child welfare.
If you test positive for prescription drugs that you have a prescription for, they may also discuss your opioid use and the safety of your family.
Please note that any actions taken on the babys plan for where it will live after it leaves the hospital is not up to health care workers. We are required to report things, and then it is in the hands of child protective services.
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