How Bad Is It To Smoke Weed During Pregnancy

Myth : Its Natural So It Must Be Safe

Marijuana Is it safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding?

Being natural doesnt necessarily mean that something is safe. Tobacco is natural, for example. Plus, marijuana is treated like many other crops growers frequently use chemicals to protect their plants from pests and weeds.

Can you eat edibles while pregnant?

As we mentioned earlier, marijuana use in any form, including edibles, is not considered safe during pregnancy.

What Are The Risks Of Smoking While Breastfeeding

If you smoke while breastfeeding you risk:

  • lowering your supply of breast milk
  • your baby being exposed to nicotine through your breast milk
  • burning your baby with hot ash
  • affecting your babys development

If you do smoke while breastfeeding, then it is better to wait until after you have fed your baby rather than before or during a feed. This will minimise your babys exposure to nicotine and other chemicals in tobacco smoke.

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Animal Studies On The Effects On Children Of Prenatal Cannabis Exposure

In animal models, controlled doses of cannabinoids were administered to pregnant or very young animals. Afterwards, the studies assessed the effects on the development of the CNS, the neurotransmission systems, the appearance or enhancement of drug-seeking behavior, the presence of altered behavior and the psychomotor skills, in order to infer the presence of the equivalent to mental disorders in animals . The use of cannabis in rats causes changes in the dopaminergic activity of the corpus striatum which leads to attention deficit and hyperactivity disorders and alterations in locomotion , and on the prefrontal cortex, which causes cognitive impairment and emotional dysregulation. Prenatal exposure in rodents causes an increased rate of ultrasonic vocalizations when separated from the mother, which leads to increased levels of anxiety that are related to the presence of CB1 receptors in the cortex, the hippocampus, the lateral septum, the nucleus accumbens and the amygdala, which regulate the release of 5-HT, dopamine, CCK and CRF, which are anxiogenic peptides .

Table 1 Described consequences of Perinatal Cannabis Exposure in Humans and Rodents

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Ok But This Morning Sickness Has To Go Cant Weed Help

Most pregnant women experience some nausea and vomiting while pregnant, whether it lasts only for the first trimester or throughout the pregnancy.

A small 2006 study of 84 women found that 65 percent used marijuana to relieve morning sickness, and over 92 percent of those using marijuana rated it as extremely effective or effective.

But other studies have found that when women used marijuana during pregnancy, their children were more likely to develop problems with behavior, learning, and memory.

Basically, some researchers believe smoking weed while pregnant can affect a babys brain.

What This Means For You

Can I Smoke Pot When I

If you smoked pot before you got pregnant, you can put any worries that it will affect your pregnancy or your baby to rest. There is no evidence that smoking marijuana before you were expecting will hurt your fetus.

It could, however, hinder your attempts at trying to conceive if you’re still in the “wanting to get pregnant” phase, so it’s best to kick the habit as soon as you start trying.

Bottom line: It’s not safe to smoke pot while you’re pregnant because of the risk of early labor, pregnancy complications and effects on your child in utero and later in life.

If youre looking for alternate ways to treat morning sickness, especially if it’s severe, ask your health care provider for suggestions there are natural remedies safer than marijuana as well as medications that have been approved by the Food & Drug Administration .

Depending on the nature of your anxiety, your doctor can recommend a combination of therapies, and, if necessary, medication thats safe for you and your baby.

If you are smoking marijuana during pregnancy, make sure you still visit the doctor regularly. Never skip your prenatal appointments because youre worried about revealing your drug use. Your doctor should be your partner in making sure your baby-to-be is healthy.

  • What to Expect When You’re Expecting, 5th edition, Heidi Murkoff.
  • What to Expect Before Youre Expecting, 2nd edition, Heidi Murkoff.

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Thumbs Up: Benefits Of Smoking Weed While Pregnant

Smoking weed during pregnancy may seem to be all bad but there are some good too. Studies suggested that taking orally-ingested cannabis in the late stage of pregnancy can help with some discomforts like pain, nausea and if you are a very lucky pot-smoking pregnant woman, can ease the pains of contractions during delivery. The main thing to keep in mind it that anyone should, however, do this only with the approval and supervision of medical professionals.

How To Stop Regular Cannabis Use Safely

If you are a regular weed user, you may consider doing a weed detox to clear your system of THC. During a weed detox, you’ll quit using cannabis completely to clear it from your body. This can take 30 to 90 days, depending on factors like how often you smoke and how much body fat you have.

It’s also important to note that stopping regular weed use can lead to uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms including:

  • Sleep disturbance

Staying hydrated, eating healthy, and getting regular exercise can help you cope with withdrawal symptoms.

If you have concerns about stopping cannabis use during pregnancy, or if you use medical cannabis to treat a specific condition, talk with your health care provider. They may be able to suggest alternatives until you are done with pregnancy and breastfeeding.

Additionally, talking to a mental health professional can help you find tools to cope. You can also try finding other ways to self-medicate, such as taking a relaxing bath when you feel stressed.

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The Bottom Line: All That Thc Might Reach The Fetus

According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the chemicals in marijuana might be able to reach the fetus by crossing the placenta which is exactly what you dont want.

Theres limited research on exactly what weed can do to a fetus . Still, doctors know of some possible risks, and thats why they advise against it.

Can Weed Help With Pregnancy

The dangers of smoking Marijuana while pregnant

Some people claim that cannabis can help with severe nausea during pregnancy. In fact, a 2018 study found that pregnant people with severe nausea and vomiting were four times more likely to use cannabis than those without a severe nausea diagnosis.

Still, the risks of smoking weed while pregnant outweigh the benefits even in these cases, Merhi says. Alternatives that could help with nausea during pregnancy include:

  • Avoiding fatty or spicy foods
  • Prescription medication, like an antiemetic pill intended to stop severe nausea and vomiting

If nausea and vomiting is a problem for you during pregnancy, talk with your health care provider about treatment options.

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What If You Smoke After The Baby Is Born

Once the baby is born and your body is yours again, you may assume its safe to pick the habit right back up again but that might not be true.

Some experts consider THC to be a developmental neurotoxin, which means a child whose mother smoked might have trouble with memory, attention, controlling impulses, and school performance.

Secondhand marijuana smoke may also be just as damaging as secondhand smoke from cigarettes.

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.

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Risks Of Weed While Pregnant

As the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services explains, cannabis can be dangerous to your baby however you use it, including smoking it, eating it , or vaping it. Thats because cannabis contains almost 500 chemicals, and they are able to pass through the placenta and then to your growing baby. There are risks to your health, too.

The Effects Of Smoking Weed While Pregnant

Is Smoking Weed Bad for Pregnant Women?

Recent research claims that maternal marijuana use is not an independent risk factor for negative outcomes. A systematic review, led by Doctor Shayna Connor and published in Obstetrics and Gynecology in October 2016, found no statistical correlation between the use of cannabis and any negative birth outcome. The authors suggested that negative outcomes such as preterm birth and low birth weights could be due to using cannabis with tobacco.

Studies have shown that heavy cannabis consumption early in pregnancy can increase the risk of behavioral issues.

However, although Connors study revealed no independent link between marijuana and birth complications, she is still wary about recommending it to pregnant women. For starters, the study did not look at long-term behavioral and health impacts in the child.

If a woman insists on using marijuana while pregnant, moderation is key. A handful of studies have shown that heavy cannabis consumption early in the pregnancy can increase the risk of behavioral issues later in the childs life.

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How Can I Quit Smoking

There is no one way to quit smoking that works for everyone, since each person has different smoking habits. Here are some tips:

  • Hide your matches, lighters, and ashtrays.
  • Designate your home a non-smoking area.
  • Ask people who smoke not to smoke around you.
  • Drink fewer caffeinated beverages. Caffeine might stimulate your urge to smoke. Also avoid alcohol, as it also might increase your urge to smoke and can be harmful to your baby.
  • Change your habits connected with smoking. If you smoked while driving or when feeling stressed, try other activities to replace smoking.
  • Keep mints or gum on hand for those times when you get the urge to smoke.
  • Stay active to keep your mind off smoking and to relieve tension. Take a walk, exercise, or read a book.
  • Do not go places where many people smoke, such as bars, clubs, and smoking sections of restaurants.
  • Look for support from others. Join a support group or smoking cessation program, such as Cleveland Clinicâs Smoking Cessation Program. For more information, please call 216.444.5819, or go to http//
  • Ohio Quit Line: 1.800.QUIT.NOW or go to

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Is It Harmful To Use Marijuana Before Pregnancy

Yes. Before pregnancy, using marijuana can affect your fertility and make it hard for you to get pregnant. Marijuana can affect:

  • Hormones that your body needs to get pregnant. Hormones are chemicals made by the body.
  • Your menstrual cycle. This is the process of your ovaries releasing an egg every month.
  • A mans sperm count . A mans sperm fertilizes a womans egg to begin a pregnancy.

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Knockout: Effects Of Marijuana On Fetus

The effect of smoking weed during pregnancy is more fatal for a baby. There is a higher influx of carbon monoxide, ammonia and hydrogen cyanide which will also be transferred to the fetus. The damage could be more severe as the chemicals could easily cross the placenta, may impact the development of a baby. Some of the effects which smoking pot during pregnancy can cause are:

  • Higher chance of premature birth
  • Placenta removal which could cause severe bleeding for woman and the baby
  • Brain defects which may cause trouble with retention, attention, and impulse control
  • Sudden Infant Death Syndrome

So How Do You Treat Morning Sickness

Smoking during pregnancy

Nausea in pregnancy is usually temporary and gets better in the second trimester for most people, Dr. Richardson said. But there are some natural remedies that can help reduce your discomfort.

Here are a few home remedies that can help with morning sickness:

  • Ginger Anything with ginger can help you feel better naturally. I tell my patients to give ginger ale, ginger tea and ginger candies a try.
  • Wristbands Some people find that wearing a wristband that presses on a specific pressure point helps relieve nausea and motion sickness.
  • Medication For some people, the nausea and vomiting can be more severe and they may need medication treatment. Over-the-counter options are vitamin B6 and doxylamine. And if there are issues with dehydration or severe nausea, there are many prescription medications your doctor or midwife can talk to you about.
  • The B.R.A.T. diet Bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast have more mellow flavors and are easy to digest.

Dont be shy about talking with your doctor or clinician about how youre feeling. If you regularly use marijuana and want to quit, they can help you find support systems. And if you are thinking about getting pregnant, now is a good time to quit. Marijuana stays in your system for a month or sometimes longer.

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Health Effects Of Marijuana During Pregnancy

No amount of marijuana has been proven safe to use during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. In 2018, the American Academy of Pediatrics released its first official guidelines, advising women who are pregnant or nursing to avoid marijuana use because it isnt safe for them or their children.

Whether smoked, eaten in food , or vaped, marijuana is stronger than ever before, which makes use during pregnancy especially risky for a developing babys health. Marijuana contains nearly 500 chemicals, including the mind-altering compound tetrahydrocannabinol . These chemicals can pass through a womans placenta to her baby during pregnancy.

Studies show that marijuana use during pregnancy may be harmful to a babys health and cause a variety of problems, including:

Fetal growth restriction .

A greater risk of stillbirth

Preterm birth

Low birth weight

Having Support Helps You Quit

Smoking is very addictive and it can be very difficult to stop, even if you really want to. But if your partner continues smoking, you are less likely to quit. Smokers who get support from family and friends are more likely to stop.

Smoking can cause fertility problems in men. It can:

  • affect the sperms normal swimming patterns
  • cause male sexual impotence .

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Should I Tell My Doctor I’m Using Marijuana While Pregnant

It depends. It’s a good idea to seek help from a trusted provider as early as possible to protect your health and the health of your baby. ACOG encourages doctors to be understanding and offer help to pregnant women who use marijuana or other drugs. In most cases, healthcare providers will offer advice and resources to help you quit and find alternative treatments for any ailments you’re using marijuana for.

But providers in some states may be required to report you to child welfare authorities if they suspect you of prenatal drug use. So you’ll want to be familiar with your state’s policies on substance abuse during pregnancy. If you live in a state with mandatory reporting, you might want to seek help from someone who isn’t a healthcare provider.

If you reach out to your provider and feel judged or unsupported about marijuana use during pregnancy, find someone more helpful and sympathetic.

For confidential and anonymous help, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration offers:

Even in states where marijuana is legal for medical and/or adult use, using pot while pregnant can get you in trouble. In Colorado, for example, where marijuana is sold legally, hospitals may notify child protective services if your baby tests positive for THC at birth.

Using Marijuana While Pregnant: What Are The Risks

Pin on Be Informed

As a result, usage is rising in the general population, including among pregnant women. A lot of women wonder if smoking weed or consuming marijuana in another form is OK during pregnancy.

While estimates are tricky, four to 10 percent of women currently report using marijuana while pregnant. This is a definite increase from the past and the actual percentage is probably higher because of a self-reporting bias. Think about your answers when we ask you how much you smoke, drink, exercise, or weigh!

But just because using marijuana is more socially or even legally acceptable does not mean its safe for your unborn child.

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