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The Risks of Being A Pregnant Addict

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The Risks of Being A Pregnant Addict

the risks

If you are addicted to drugs or alcohol, your body is already damaging itself. Each time you consume a drug, it lowers your lifeline and health. But when you add a pregnancy to the mix, it raises a lot of life-threatening risks to you and your baby’s health. If you’re in this situation, it’s best to seek help immediately.

If you don’t seek help, you are putting yourself and your baby at risk.

Risks Can Include

  • Complications of pregnancy; separation of the placenta from the uterus or premature contractions

  • Interfering with the delivery of oxygen or vital nutrients.

  • Harming the fetus directly by restricting growth or development.

  • Causing spontaneous miscarriage, premature delivery, or fetal death.

 A baby is born every hour addicted to opiates.

When a baby withdraws from opiates, other problems can occur as well. Problems can include: breathing, fever, blotchy skin, diarrhea, feeding troubles, seizures, and more. The withdrawal process is called neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS). It can range from 1 week to 6 months. Newborns who are born before 37 weeks may experience more severe symptoms. 

There are ways to treat NAS which may include hydrating the baby with an IV, feeding with a high-calorie baby formula, or weaning the baby off with a (safe) drug.


How Can Drugs Affect Pregnancies?


Meth can increase the heart rate for you and your baby. If you use meth when pregnant, you can obtain similar problems as a heroin user. It can cause the baby to have less oxygen, which can lead to low birth weight. It can also increase the likelihood of premature labor, miscarriage, and placental abruption. Some withdrawal symptoms can include tremors, sleeplessness, muscle spasms, and feeding difficulties. There’s also a chance of a learning difference when the baby grows older. 


When you’re pregnant, marijuana crosses the placenta to your baby. It contains toxins that keeps your baby from getting the oxygen that he or she needs to grow. Smoking can also increase the chance of miscarriage, low birth weight, premature births, developmental delays, and behavioral/learning problems.


When you’re pregnant and using heroin, it crosses the placenta to your baby. And since heroin is an addictive drug, your baby can become dependant on the drug when born. Using heroin throughout your pregnancy increases the chance of premature birth, low birth weight, breathing difficulties, low blood sugar, bleeding within the brain, and infant death. Your baby can also go through severe withdrawal symptoms which might include irritability, convulsions, diarrhea, fever, sleep abnormalities, and joint stiffness. 


When you’re pregnant, marijuana crosses the placenta and enters your baby’s circulation. During the early stage of pregnancy,  there is a higher chance of miscarriage. Later on in the pregnancy, cocaine can cause placental abruption, which can lead to severe bleeding, preterm birth, and fetal death. The risk of birth defects also appears to be greater when the mother has used cocaine frequently during pregnancy.

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Posted in Addiction, Alcoholism, Drug Addiction, Health and Wellness