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Effects Of Using Marijuana While Pregnant

There is growing support for the legalization of marijuana in the United States. Currently, marijuana is legal to use recreationally in 15 states, 3 territories, as well as the District of Columbia. However, marijuana is still illegal at the federal level.

In 2019, Representative Tulsi Gabbard along with numerous others introduced a bill to end the Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act. This attempt was unsuccessful.

Marijuana is classified as a Schedule I drug by the Drug Enforcement Administration. This means it has a high likelihood of being abused and can result in physical or psychological dependence.

Marijuana was recently legalized in Nevada, for use both medicinally and recreationally. There are many risks for anyone who is using this drug, but today we are going to focus on the risks involved with using marijuana while pregnant.

Using Marijuana

Marijuana – also known as weed and pot – is the substance derived from the dried leaves and buds of the Cannabis sativa plant.

There are over 100 unique chemicals known as cannabinoids in each marijuana plant. Each of these chemicals has a different effect on the body. Two of the most well-known chemicals found in marijuana are cannabidiol (CBD) and Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

Most people roll the dried bits up and smoke them to experience the effects of the drug. These effects are felt almost immediately. Others include the drug in baked goods or drinks, and the effect of the marijuana can be delayed, but then intensified when it kicks in.

The National Institute on Drug Abuse explains that using marijuana can result in a variety of effects. Some of the pleasurable effects include:

  •   Altered perception of time
  •   Heightened sensory perception
  •   Increased appetite
  •   Laughter
  •   Relaxation
  •   Sense of euphoria

The drug also comes with a laundry list of negative effects, including:

  •   Anxiety
  •   Delusions
  •   Distrust
  •   Fear
  •   Hallucinations
  •   Loss of personal identity
  •   Panic
  •   Psychotic disorders

There are a couple of different ways in which people use marijuana: recreationally and medicinally.

Medical Use Of Marijuana

Many people use marijuana as medicine, although there is still relatively little research to prove the effectiveness of the drug.

To use marijuana medically, a person needs to have it prescribed by a doctor. They are often given a card showing that they have a valid medical reason to have the drug. Typically, marijuana needs to be purchased at a licensed dispensary.

Research has shown marijuana helps relieve nausea in cancer patients who are undergoing chemotherapy. It has been found to help with muscle spasticity resulting from multiple sclerosis.

Recreational Use Of Marijuana

Any use of marijuana that does not meet medical justification is termed recreational. Although marijuana used in both methods comes from the same plant, the goal of using the drug is different.

When someone is seeking marijuana for recreational purposes, they are typically looking for types that features a high THC content. This triggers the desired psychoactive effects.

Health Effects Of Using Marijuana While Pregnant

1 in 20 women in the United States report that they use marijuana while pregnant. This is worrisome because while marijuana can cause problems in an everyday user, it can result in even more trouble when used by a pregnant woman.

Effects On Mom

Smoking pot while pregnant can cause trouble for you in several ways, including:

  •   Decreased oxygen levels, creating breathing problems
  •   Increased dizziness, making you more at risk of falls
  •   Lung injuries that make you more susceptible to lung cancer
  •   Lack of sound judgment, allowing you to make dangerous choices

Many women think they are in the clear since marijuana has been used to treat nausea and morning sickness. This is not the case, and there are safer options that are legal.

Effects On Baby

A 2019 UNLV Study was published in the Journal of Maternal-Fetal and Neonatal Medicine in which researchers found troubling outcomes for children born to mothers who reported using marijuana while pregnant.

The study found that when mothers used marijuana regularly, the babies growing inside them faced many challenges.

These babies had developmental problems. The babies were at risk of compromised blood flow to the placenta while in utero.

The developing brain needs an optimal environment in which to thrive, but studies show that marijuana makes this difficult.

A lot of the negative outcomes for the baby are similar to Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD).

We Can Help

The FDA strongly discourages using marijuana while pregnant, and so do we. If you or a loved one is battling an addiction while preparing for a bundle of joy, please reach out to us.

Here are Landmark Recovery, our team of expert staff is standing by, waiting to take your call and help propel you to a better future.

Please contact us today to learn more about the options that are available to you!

About the Author

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Landmark Recovery Staff

This post was written by a Landmark Recovery staff member. If you have any questions, please contact us at 888-448-0302.

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