Substance Abuse During Pregnancy: Your Baby and You
Substance abuse during pregnancy affects not only you but also your baby. During pregnancy you owe it to your baby to stop drinking and using drugs now and get help so that your baby will have the best chance at a healthy birth. Although there has been strong negative connection between alcohol and drug abuse and pregnancy for many years, an increasing number of young expectant mothers do not understand the risks to their babies when they continue their substance use.
Substance Abuse and Your Baby
A study conducted by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) monitored substance abuse activity for one year among pregnant women aged 15 and 44. NIDA results showed that adolescents between 15 and 25 were more likely to engage in binge drinking, drug use, as well as smoke cigarettes – even though they were pregnant. Substance abuse including marijuana, methamphetamine, cocaine, alcohol and even tobacco is harmful to your baby. Methamphetamine use during pregnancy may result in the baby having a smaller brain. Babies born to heroin users can have withdrawal. Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, developmental delays, early labor and low birth weight are all risks that face babies born to substance use mothers. Illicit drug use including cocaine and marijuana can cause serious learning and attention problems that can be exacerbate depending on the severity of drug use.
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
Women who continue to drink during pregnancy put their baby at risk for being born with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) which is a pattern of mental and physical defects during fetus development during pregnancy. Babies born with FAS may have damage to the central nervous system and brain which can result in mental retardation as well as facial abnormalities. Babies born to alcohol addicted mothers can have a multitude of problems including poor growth patterns, problems with hearing and sight, attention and learning deficits, behavioral issues, problems with sleeping patterns and eating irregularities. In many cases, these babies need additional medical and learning care for the rest of their lives.
Talk to Your Doctor
Before you take any action you need to speak with your OB-GYN. Your doctor will have recommendations for the best course of action to stop your substance abuse that will be safe for you and the baby. It is possible that your OB-GYN may suggest a medical detox that will be safe for you and the baby. An inpatient medical detox treatment will be able to monitor the baby’s health (and you too) and will be able to act should there be any complications during treatment. Taking the necessary steps now to stop your substance abuse will increase your chances for a safe and successful pregnancy and a healthier and happier baby. Substance abuse during pregnancy can cause serious harm to your baby; however help is available to help you stop using drugs and alcohol now for a healthier baby tomorrow. If you are pregnant and ready to stop your substance abuse Gallus Detox Center can help. Call us today at 855-338-6929.