Drugs & Alcohol Abuse

Everyone knows that using drugs or drinking alcohol is an unhealthy habit.

While pregnant using drugs or alcohol can create many health issues for both mother and baby. In spite of this, many expectant mothers continue to use drugs and alcohol. The national statistics are increasing each year and “drugged addicted babies” come to life every day, with serious lifelong medical problems.

Alcohol

During the pregnancy, doctors warn the expectant mother that even a small amount of alcohol consumed during pregnancy can place an unborn baby at risk. Drinking alcohol:

  • Can increase the risk of miscarriage
  • May result in a number of development issues in the baby, involving negative consequences affecting the physical, mental, and behavioral health

Tobacco & Marijuana

When you smoke a cigarette, you inhale smoke and permit chemicals to enter your body system. When an expectant mother smokes a cigarette, the chemicals also enter the baby’s body and that limit the amount of oxygen being received by the fetus and can damage the baby’s brain.

Smoking during a pregnancy exposes the unborn baby to the tar, nicotine and carbon monoxide. The health issues that the baby is exposed are:

  • respiratory illness
  • cerebral palsy
  • problems with eyesight and hearing
  • lower birth weight
  • higher risk of sudden infant death syndrome

Marijuana must be avoided when trying to conceive, during pregnancy, and while breastfeeding. Several studies suggest that marijuana’s use may be associated with impaired fetal development, rare forms of cancer, premature birth, and low body weight at birth.

Living in a smoking environment can even affect the unborn baby and, later, the child.

Painkillers

If you are pregnant, be very careful with the medication you used to take before your pregnancy. Always consult your doctor, or at least, ask advice to your pharmacist. Some common medication can be harmful to your developing fetus.

Cocaine, Heroin, Ecstasy, Meth…

For expectant mothers, using drugs increases the risk of many severe and long-term health issues – for the mother herself, for the quality of her pregnancy, but also for the unborn baby. And later, for the baby who will become a child with severe brain damages or behavioral issues…

If you are expecting a baby while using drugs, please talk to your doctor, your counselor if you have one, or anyone in your support system who will be able to help you.

Treatment for Drug Addiction

Medical facilities like hospitals and clinics can give you support and provide you with the appropriate resources to help you stop using drugs or alcohol.

Some additional resources are available around Houston:

The SAMHSA’s National Helpline: https://www.samhsa.gov/find-help/national-helpline
The Alcoholics Anonymous of Houston: https://www.aahouston.org/
The Houston Area Service Committee of Narcotics Anonymous: https://hascona.com/services/
The Texas Area Service Gulf Coast Cocaine Anonymous: http://www.ca-texas.org/
The American Addiction Center website: https://americanaddictioncenters.org/rehab-guide/free/

To know more about the effects of the drug or alcohol abuse on yourself and the baby, go visit:
https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/research-reports/substance-use-in-women/substance-use-while-pregnant-breastfeeding

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