Marijuana during pregnancy is becoming more prevalent. Hopefully, you’ll consider actually reading this post before you comment. 🙂 This post points out the dangers of smoking weed while pregnant and how CPS will be involved.
Marijuana while pregnant or breastfeeding can have serious consequences. I can’t believe I have to write this post, but we’re seeing it more and more — and somehow moms are shocked and surprised by the consequences.
How do I know this? I am an L&D nurse (since 2001) and this is something we deal with frequently (more and more lately).
Will cps take my newborn for smoking weed?
The # question in people’s minds about marijuana during pregnancy
**First off, they will NOT take your baby away for taking pot during pregnancy, but in my state (and most states) it does require a CPS call by us to notify them. CPS may or may not visit you, but they will have a record of it in their system. If you have questions about the requirements in your state, I would recommend you to ask your doctor.**
It is my firmest desire that babies are given the most benign environment to grow in during pregnancy. That means limiting coffee, alcohol, drugs (especially those unstudied), etc — except when the benefits far outweigh the risks, and can’t be gotten in other ways.
That is what this article is about. If you strongly believe Marijuana is great during pregnancy, you and I will just have to disagree.
Smoking Marijuana While Pregnant
Marijuana is becoming legal in more and more states both for recreational and medicinal uses. Whatever side of the argument you stand on for that — the reality is that when you’re pregnant things are very different.
Taking marijuana during your pregnancy is a bad idea and is illegal — in most states. It is illegal for a doctor to give you a marijuana prescription while you are pregnant.
Consequences for your baby
Studies are showing that marijuana use during your pregnancy can cause:
- low birth weight
- premature birth
- small head circumference
- decreased length
Studies are still being done, and the research on this topic is PRETTY poor, but most things show those consequences above are possibilities.
After birth, babies exposed to marijuana in utero have changes in brain development — things like changed responses to visual stimuli, higher-pitched cry or trembling. While it doesn’t appear that babies go through withdrawal, the longer term studies are noting things like change in school performance, memory, impulse control or attention spans.
You can learn more about these consequences in this article from the NIH. I’ve read a few studies and it seems that there just aren’t many out there. While the results are fairly inconclusive (and many studies seem to contradict each other) the majority point to possible brain issues as the child develops.
We recommend you stay away from most un-studied things during pregnancy, especially during the first trimester. It’s just that simple.
**I mainly wrote this article for the consequences that I have seen below — you need to realize that in most states pot is illegal. You are using an illicit drug during pregnancy…**
Smoking weed while pregnant — cps involvement
Depending on your state, your provider can sometimes take a urine drug screen with or without your consent.
The results of that urine drug screen (which always includes a screening for marijuana) will be noted in your chart.
When you come to labor and delivery, we will call a social work consult, and they will call the state to come assess the situation.
We may also ask to take a urine drug screen on you in the hospital that will show recent drug use. And no, your drug screen will not come up positive for you being around people who smoke pot (although, you shouldn’t do that either).
**If you plan to refuse the drug screen, we will screen your baby (that does not require consent). We will also call social work about your refusal and that refusal will look worse to the state’s social services**
From that point, it is out of our hands. It is in CPS’s hands at that point.
Nurses may also take your baby’s first stools to test it for marijuana to see how far into your pregnancy you took the drug (which may be a relief for those who mistakenly took it early in their pregnancy, before they knew — those stools will back you up).
If you are currently pregnant and using marijuana you need to stop. If you are taking it for a “medical condition” you need to talk to your doctors about alternative methods that are legal.
**If you disagree with this article I strongly encourage you to talk with your doctor about your drug use and what to expect after delivery. **
Can they take your baby away for smoking pot while pregnant?
If it is illegal in your state — I do believe that they can take your baby away. That does not mean that they WILL take your baby away. Family court’s goal is to always keep families together if at all possible.
Marijuana and Breastfeeding
The compounds in Marijuana are found in higher concentrations in breast milk than they are in the user’s bloodstream. It can have similar consequences for your baby as noted above, and also noted in the study above.
If you liked this post — be sure to keep your healthy pregnancy up with my pregnancy newsletter, and check out my other pregnancy posts below that.
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