How Does Smoking Weed Affect Your Baby During Pregnancy

At Which Stage Of Pregnancy Can Smoking Weed Affect A Baby

What Effect Does Cannabis Use Have During Pregnancy?

Smoking weed can negatively affect a baby at any stage during pregnancy. While its true that smoking earlier during pregnancy is less likely to cause any damage, every stage of pregnancy is just as vital as every other.

During the first trimester, smoking weed can affect the way your babys DNA directs its body to form. Once youve reached the second trimester, using THC can result in your baby developing emotional issues later in life, and if youre foolish enough to smoke weed during the third trimester, your baby could experience THC withdrawals after birth.

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Why You Should Not Smoke Weed While Trying To Conceive

Smoking weed lowers your chance of getting pregnant and may lead to early pregnancy loss, where the embryo is unable to implant so it cannot survive.

When you do become pregnant, you may not know for two weeks or even longer. Using cannabis during this time could negatively affect the fetus. “THC can affect neurodevelopment of the brain cells and cause other problems,” says Kristy June, MD, a practicing physician and medical expert at Bed Bible. This is just one reason why it’s best to give up weed use a few weeks prior to trying.

If Mom Smokes Marijuana Does The Baby Too

Moms and moms-to-be want whats best for their babies. To give them the best start in life they sacrifice their bodiesand their sleepand give up a number of things. Sushi and alcohol are both on the list of things to avoid. So too, is .

I understand that some moms seek out marijuana to relieve their morning sickness, anxiety, or pain, said Camille Fung, MD, a neonatologist with University of Utah Health. But because existing research on the effects of marijuana on the developing brain is conflicting, the safest choice at this moment for babies whose brains are constantly developing new cells and connections should be to abstain from marijuana use.

During pregnancy babies are fed through an organ called the placenta. If a mom uses marijuana in any form while pregnant, the THC in the drugthe ingredient that gives you the highcan be passed through the placenta to the developing fetus. This could cause developmental delays and behavioral problems, leading to problems throughout life.

After giving birth, moms should continue to abstain from marijuana if they are breastfeeding. THC can be passed to infants through breast milk, potentially impacting brain development and growth in those crucial first few months. Also, it is not possible to pump and dump breastmilk when it comes to marijuana due to the fact THC is stored in body fat and can be released slowly over time.

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Effects Of Marijuana Use On Pregnancy

Cannabinoids, whether endogenous or plant derived, exert their central nervous system effects via cannabinoid receptor type 1. Animal models demonstrate that endocannabinoids play key roles in normal fetal brain development, including in neurotransmitter systems, and neuronal proliferation, migration, differentiation, and survival 14. Human fetuses exhibit central nervous system cannabinoid receptor type 1 as early as 14 weeks of gestation, with increasing receptor density with advancing gestational age, which suggests a role for endocannabinoids in normal human brain development 1516.

Are There Benefits To Using Marijuana While Pregnant

From Your Body To Your Baby Chart

There’s no evidence that using marijuana during pregnancy has any benefits, and experts agree that the risks of using pot during pregnancy far outweigh any potential upsides.

Some women say that weed helps relieve pregnancy symptoms such as morning sickness, but there’s no research to confirm this. Because of the dangers associated with marijuana use, experts recommend trying safer remedies for morning sickness. If nondrug options don’t work, talk to your healthcare provider about anti-nausea medications you can take while pregnant.

Anecdotally, some pregnant women report using weed to relieve other pregnancy symptoms such as achiness and loss of appetite. Again, the risks outweigh any potential benefits, and there are no studies that support this.

Medical marijuana generally contains higher CBD content and lower THC content. The use of CBD in pregnancy hasn’t been studied well, so it’s unknown if medical marijuana poses less risk to a baby than recreational marijuana. If you use medical marijuana, talk with your healthcare provider about other treatments that are safer to use during pregnancy.

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Neonatal Outcomes: Effect Of Level Of Cannabis Use During Early Pregnancy

Compared with the babies of women who used cannabis up to once a week during early pregnancy, the infants of women who used cannabis more than once a week had lower mean values for birthweight , head circumference , and birth length . The odds ratio for severe infant morbidity or death increased with persistence of cannabis use during pregnancy .

Dangers Of Smoking Marijuana While Pregnant

The affects of pot on the baby are obvious. The danger of preterm birth, low birth weight and poor development are frequently discussed. The risk to the mom, however, is not as widely known. The emotional side affects can increase the risk of anxiety, depression, paranoia and other feelings. Physically, marijuana can make her uncomfortably outside the moment during lsbor.

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Turning To Marijuana As Medicine

A recent study showed that marijuana use is much more frequent in the first trimester than later in pregnancy. One explanation may be that women are using marijuana to reduce nausea and vomiting that occurs early in pregnancy.

For nausea and vomiting, there are many prescription medications and non-medical treatments that are safe to take during pregnancy. To alleviate physical discomfort and pain there are many other options to consider such as massage, physical therapy, and pregnancy bands all of which have been proven to help.

Pregnant women are at higher risks for depression than people in the general population, but marijuana is not a treatment for this illness. Better alternatives include counseling, behavioral therapy, and safe prescription medications.

Talk to your doctor before you become pregnant if you use marijuana, even occasionally. They will help you get off it and find safe alternatives to reduce anxiety or alleviate normal discomforts of pregnancy. It will also help you find longer-term solutions that will be effective for you and safe for your baby.

In my opinion, using marijuana during pregnancy simply isnt worth the risk.

For more information about pregnancy, labor, and delivery, to receive Your Pregnancy Matters email alerts when we publish new stories. You can also make an appointment to see one of our specialists by calling .

Why Marijuana Bump Science Is So Shaky

Baby Your Baby Quitting Smoking During Pregnancy

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 To Pregnant Women

While some women use marijuana to treat morning sickness and some of the other conditions that arise during pregnancy, evidence shows that cannabis may create or exacerbate other issues in a way that could create further discomfort or even dangerous health problems.

A 2015 study published by the British Medical Journal found that pregnant women who are already at a higher risk of anemia have an increased risk of anemia if they use marijuana before or during pregnancy. The same study found that cannabis use increased the risk of miscarriage.

Another potential problem created by marijuana use during pregnancy is the risk of fainting and dizziness. This can be caused by an increased heart rate and drop in blood pressure two common side effects of tetrahydrocannabinol . In addition to all of these things, impaired memory and coordination can add to the brain fog that may women experience while pregnant.

When Can I Resume Smoking Weed

In most cases, you can start smoking weed again after you deliver your baby. Since cannabinoids pass easily through the placenta in amounts that are unsafe for your baby, once you get pregnant, it is important to continue abstaining until you give birth. “Exposure to cannabinoids can impact how babyâs neurotransmitters mature and function,” says Dr. Chen.

THC also makes it into breast milk, so it is not currently recommended to smoke weed while breastfeeding. More research is needed to say for sure whether there is any safe amount of cannabis use while breastfeeding. Until we know more, it is best to refrain completely until your baby is fully weaned. “You don’t want to risk the possibility of affecting the baby’s development,” says Dr. June.

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Can Smoking Weed Affect A Pregnancy Test

Smoking weed cannot affect a pregnancy test. Because the pregnancy tests detect the HCG hormone in the body. The womens placenta produces the HCG hormone in case of pregnancy-test can detect it a day after your missed period. The birth control pills and antibiotics can interfere with the pregnancy test results in the form of false positive or false negative.

Baby Inside Put The Cannabis Aside

Does Smoking Weed Affect Pregnancy

Choosing to carry a baby to term can be one of the most frightening things a woman faces in life. Even more intimidating is the prospect of caring for and loving your child for the rest of your life regardless of who they may turn out to be.

Do your best to ensure your baby will be happy and healthy forever by making your womb as perfect an environment as it can be. Your child has no need for THC during development, and any cannabinoids that reach his or her brain may cause skewed development that lasts a lifetime.

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Withdrawal Symptoms In Babies

It is an established fact that smokers babies show signs of withdrawal of drugs. The babies may be jittery, excitable, and at more risk of respiratory diseases. How severe are the symptoms and how long do they last depends on various factors including the drug dosage. Generally, the symptoms start from the first 24 hours after the birth-some babies experience late withdrawal symptoms after two weeks of birth. Withdrawal symptoms in the baby can include:

  • Increased breathing rate
  • Difficulty in feeding

And many more. The symptoms intensity decrease with time and can last up to months triggered by further drugs exposure.

Aggressive Behavior: A clinical study of 20,000 children whose mothers smoke weed showed aggressive and rule-breaking behavior.

Anemia: As per the findings of the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine mothers who use marijuana before, during, or after pregnancy has a greater risk of anemia in their child.

Makes It Harder To Get Pregnant

When you’re trying to have a baby, you want to stack the odds in your favor. Eliminating anything that might make it less likely for you to conceive is important.

There are some things that can make it harder to get pregnant that you can’t change, such as advanced age or a medical condition you may face. But you can make healthy choices, like skipping the weed, that help prepare your body for successful conception. “Even if you’re perfectly healthy, you don’t necessarily get pregnant every time you try,” notes Dr. June. “It’s best to abstain from anything that will make it harder.”

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How Does Marijuana Affect Pregnancy

If youre pregnant and use marijuana, it has effects on your baby. The chemicals in marijuana pass through the placenta to the baby during pregnancy. These can lead to complications in the pregnancy. They can also put these babies at risk for longer-term problems.

Research on this area is limited. Most of what we know is from self-reported data and retrospective studies. We dont have details yet on:

  • How much marijuana is harmful

  • When use is most risky

  • What types of marijuana formulations might be more dangerous than others

But what we do know so far is concerning and pregnant people should be advised to avoid it.

Can You Smoke Marijuana While Pregnant

Marijuana Is it safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding?

Various school of thoughts exists about the use of marijuana in the pregnancy but the most valid fact is it is harmful to the baby in many ways. The active compound of weed is THC that crosses the placenta of the mother and enters the fetus causing various complications. But the mothers also use others drugs like tobacco or alcohol, so the exact effect of weed on the fetus is still controversial. Different stats and studies have been conducted regarding the use of the drug in pregnancy but the result varies. It is shown that weed is the most commonly used drug during pregnancy either for sickness or recreational use.

According to the survey of the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, about 2 to 5% of the women use weed during pregnancy with the highest rate of urban and young women to about 28%.

Another stats by study reveals, from 2009 to 2016 there is a double to triple increase in the mothers ratio who use marijuana in pregnancy. The ratio increased from 4 to 7%-there is a significant need for awareness among pregnant women to make their baby safe and healthy from the consequences of marijuana.

A study by Young Wolffs Team at Kaiser Permanente shows that odds of using marijuana among pregnant women with severe nausea and vomiting were four times greater than those who dont have nausea and vomiting.

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Final Verdict To Smoking Weed While Pregnant

An active smoker that is planning to get pregnant , is advised to speak with a medical expert for more advice and guidance. More side effects, benefits, and implications of smoking weed during pregnancy will be exposed, so one can decide whether it is bad or not. Doctors also guide women through each pregnancy stage monitoring when its better to continue or discontinue smoking weed. In the end, the choice is optionable to make in the best interest of a woman and a baby.

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:

  • Sudden Infant Death Syndrome

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Could Your Baby Test Positive For The Marijuana If You Smoke Weed

Definitely, your baby can test positive for marijuana if you smoke weed. Nurse can test your babys first stool for the detection of marijuana. In many hospitals, the child is tested after birth for various drugs. As per the rule of various hospitals and states, the pediatricians are mandated to inform the child protection services if your baby test positive for drugs. The record will be kept safe for the future and you will be in considerations.

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Effects Of Marijuana Use On Lactation

There are insufficient data to evaluate the effects of marijuana use on infants during lactation and breastfeeding, and in the absence of such data, marijuana use is discouraged 42. Breastfeeding women should be informed that the potential risks of exposure to marijuana metabolites are unknown and should be encouraged to discontinue marijuana use. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists Breastfeeding page, available at, provides more resources about breastfeeding for clinicians and patients.

Whats The Prevalence Of Weed Use In Pregnancy

What will smoking weed do to a baby?

Weed is the most commonly used illicit drug during pregnancy. Studies have tried to estimate the exact number of pregnant women who use weed, but results vary.

According to the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists , 2 to 5 percent of women use weed during pregnancy. This number goes up for certain groups of women. For example, young, urban, and socioeconomically disadvantaged women report higher rates of use that reach up to 28 percent.

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Pregnant Smokers Vs All Adultsmokers

The CDC data showed wide state-by-statevariation in reported rates of smoking during pregnancy. West Virginia was thehighest at 25.1 percent, and California was the lowest at 1.6 percent. Itsinteresting to compare these with data for all adults who smoke because thereare some inconsistencies.

In West Virginia, the rates both of pregnantwomen and all adults who smoke are high. However, in Louisiana, the rate ofsmoking during pregnancy is less than 7 percent, and the adult smokingrate is almost 23 percent. It makes me curious whetherdoctors in Louisiana have strong programs to help women quit or whether thereis a severe stigma against smoking during pregnancy that has led to extremeunderreporting.

Sometimes health questions that lead toanswers that are considered unhealthy behaviors, such as smoking duringpregnancy, result in a bias of underreporting. Women might be embarrassed totell their doctors if they smoke or fear repercussions for telling the truth.Its vital to understand that the doctor is not there to judge you or get youin trouble.

Were here to help women have the healthiestpregnancies possible in their unique situations. In our clinic at UTSouthwestern, we talk to all pregnant patients about smoking. And if ourpatients do smoke, we discuss the risks to help them make the best choices forthemselves and their babies.

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