Pregnancy and Addiction

Pregnant mother and addictionWhen a woman is struggling with drug addiction or alcoholism and finds herself pregnant, she must make a decision. Substance abuse not only affects the mother but it also affects the unborn child. It is absolutely necessary for any pregnant mother who is addicted to get the treatment necessary to protect her baby.

But seeking treatment for drugs and alcohol can be very difficult for anyone. It can be particularly difficult for pregnant mothers to be brave enough to ask for help. The truth is that seeking help for addiction during pregnancy is a brave and selfless act, and the best decision that a mother can possibly make for the welfare of her child.

Effects of Substance Abuse on a Child During Pregnancy

There are many dangers of substance abuse during pregnancy including the following:

  • Miscarriage
  • The risk of having an addicted baby
  • Added strain to the baby’s heart and organs which can lead to serious health problems
  • Risk of mental retardation or developmental problems
  • Risk of pre-term labor or danger to the mother
  • Heart, lung and brain problems and low birth-weight for the baby
  • Behavior problems in the child at a later time
  • Stillbirth
  • Anemia, infections and bleeding in the mother

Add to these risks that in some U.S. states, substance abuse during pregnancy can count as child abuse in a court of law. Remember that every substance the mother takes passes through the placenta and enters the body of her unborn child as well.

Drug Detox During Pregnancy

Individuals who are strongly addicted to drugs or alcohol often fear the withdrawal from dependence on a drug or alcohol. Dependence occurs when the person uses the substance so much that the body becomes used to it, and requires more and more of the substance in order to achieve the same effects. Withdrawal occurs when that substance is suddenly removed—the person may feel painful cravings for the substance.

Some women may fear that detox may be painful or unsafe during pregnancy. Every detox is different. That is why it is important for every woman to consult with a doctor or medically trained professional to plan the most effective and safe detox possible. Some substances must be detoxed very carefully in order to avoid harming the baby. A trained medical professional can also help you ensure that your detox is as painless and as safe for your baby as possible. Keep in mind that the earlier in your pregnancy you detox, the safer it is for the baby.

Help Finding Treatment for Addiction During Pregnancy

Beating a drug addiction is a challenge for anyone. During pregnancy, it is important to treat your drug addiction carefully and swiftly. The best treatment during pregnancy will involve medical supervision and the care of a counselor, an obstetrician, nurses and therapists.

We can help you find the best treatment for you. We offer a 24 hour, toll-free helpline that is staffed by caring professional counselors. Call now to speak with a live person about your situation and let us help you.