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Study finds high prevalence of marijuana use among pregnant women
Posted in Addiction, Pregnancy, Research - 0 Comments

Study finds high prevalence of marijuana use among pregnant women

Pregnancy is a blessing and the journey to becoming a mother is beautiful. However, for some women, it could be challenging in terms of dealing with morning sickness and anxiety. To cope with such a situation, some pregnant women statrt taking drugs. According to a recent study published in the journal JAMA, an increasing number of young pregnant females are taking marijuana to deal with the difficult symptoms.

According to the study, the prevalence of prenatal cannabis use among Californian women shot up from 4.2 percent in 2009 to 7.1 percent in 2016. Surprisingly, the pot use by pregnant women under 8 years increased from 12.5 percent to 21.8 percent during the same period. Additionally, in women aged 18-24 years, the marijuana use escalated from 9.8 percent to 19 percent.

The researchers analyzed 279,457 pregnant females aged 12 years or older who were enrolled under the Kaiser Permanente Northern California health care system. The participants were asked to complete a questionnaire pertaining their marijuana use and all of them were made to undergo a cannabis toxicology test during their prenatal care visits from 2009 until 2016. Women were mostly screened for marijuana use at their eight weeks of pregnancy. The researchers found that the marijuana use rose in all the age groups. However, it was the highest for women who were 24 years old or younger. The use rose from 3.4 percent to 5.1 percent in the age group of 25-34 and it shot up from 2.1 percent to 3.3 percent in women who were older than 34 years.

Marijuana and negative pregnancy outcomes

Marijuana has a chemical known as tethrahydrocannabinol (THC), which can pass from the mother to her baby and result in negative pregnancy outcomes like developmental problems in the infant. According to the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), women who are carrying a child or planning to get pregnant should stop using marijuana even for medicinal purposes and should instead opt for an alternative therapy. As a concrete correlation between marijuana use and breast feeding is lacking, its use should be discouraged in women planning a baby.

Addiction to marijuana can rip off a person of his or her relationships, social circle and job. In spite of support from different quarters to legalize medical marijuana in different states of the U.S., it remains a fact that marijuana is addictive and is prone to abuse. The drug is the most commonly abused substance in the country. It has both short-term and long-term side effects. Short-term effects include mood fluctuation, altered memory and impaired body movements, whereas impaired brain function is one of its long-term effects. Further, experts say that marijuana abuse during pregnancy can increase the risk of miscarriage and can also put the child at risk of developing leukemia and nervous system disabilities.

If a woman is grappling with substance abuse, help her seek immediate medical assistance at a reputed drug rehab facility. Sovereign Health specializes in mental health and substance abuse treatment for men and women. It has several mental health facilities spead across the U.S. Our Chandler facility in Arizona is one of the best women only drug addiction treatment centers in the country. We offer evidence-based treatment to women addicted to marijuana or any other drug. Call our 24/7 helpline or chat online with one of our counselors for more information on our drug addiction treatment centers for women.

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