Medical Marijuana

Busting the Myths around Marijuana Use during Pregnancy


During pregnancy, expectant mothers are encouraged to take deliberate steps to keep themselves in optimal health. Obstetricians often give pregnant moms advice about exercise, healthy eating, and things to avoid during pregnancy to ensure that both the mother and the unborn baby are as healthy as possible. At the top of the list of things to avoid are tobacco, alcohol, and weed due to the considerable harm they can cause to the developing fetus. But should medical cannabis be lumped in with the list of stuff to avoid during pregnancy?

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Medical Marijuana Use & Pregnancy

Many advocates of alternative medicines such as medical marijuana maintain that there’s not enough research evidence to condone marijuana during pregnancy. There are valid reasons why an expectant mother may desire to continue using medical marijuana. Some may already have serious health problems that they are treating with cannabis. Others may simply be struggling with severe morning sickness, which prevents them from keeping adequate food in the stomach to give vital nutrients to the unborn baby.

Medical marijuana (MMJ) has also shown great potential in treating a variety of conditions, including the management of hyperemesis associated with chemotherapy and pregnancy, as well as the amelioration of neurogenic pain.

So far, it has not been established whether the long-term effects of prenatal exposure to medicinal marijuana in a controlled manner exhibit different health effects than cannabis used as a recreational substance during pregnancy

It’s obvious that urgent studies are required in this light. But as things stand now, any advice about medicinal marijuana use during pregnancy must take into account both the potential benefits of the herb with regards to maternal wellbeing and the possible effect of cannabis exposure on the developing fetus.


Medical Marijuana

Side Effects of Marijuana During Pregnancy


Reasons for Increased Marijuana Use During Pregnancy

Statistics indicate that many pregnant women use marijuana. The common reason for the increased use of marijuana among pregnant women is perhaps addiction. However, some women use it as a means to suppress pregnancy-related hyperemesis or nausea (morning sickness).

Researchers are still unsure how the herb can affect a fetus. As a result, most medical practitioners recommend refraining from taking weed in any form during pregnancy.

Does Marijuana Use During Pregnancy Affects Baby’s Brain?

Advocates of medical marijuana as an alternative medicine maintain that using marijuana during pregnancy as prescribed by a medical doctor has no known health complications. Some people believe that since medical use is legal in many areas of the US, then marijuana use in pregnancy and lactation is safe. Others believe that smoking marijuana is dangerous, but other forms of the herb, such as edibles, do not harm the fetus.

Is it Legal to Use Marijuana During Pregnancy?

Marijuana is illegal in some states but legal to use for medical purposes in many parts of the U.S. A few states have even legalized it for recreational purposes. If medical cannabis is legalized in your state, your doctor may recommend it for treating nausea, pain, and muscle spasticity. Ultimately, it boils down to weighing between the health benefits and wellbeing of the expectant mother and the safety of the developing fetus.

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Evidence Supporting Medical Marijuana’s Safety During Pregnancy

Many proponents of medical cannabis believe that cannabis has no ill effects on the baby, either while in utero or after being born. Cannabis is an all-natural medication, and unlike tobacco and alcohol, it’s not laced with any harmful chemicals. Those advocating its safety point to the fact that weed has been tagged with a negative stigma for several decades. Long before that, marijuana was used for its rich medical properties for centuries.

However, those who believe in medical cannabis’s safety do not contradict the scientific evidence that has arisen cautioning against prenatal cannabis use, but they believe that there’s more to it than the evidence provided. For example, many of the women used for those studies were drawn mainly from low socio-economic backgrounds. That means that a variety of other factors could have contributed to the symptoms experienced by the newborns highlighted in these studies, such as:

  • Lack of prenatal care
  • Poor healthcare for the mother
  • Preexisting medical issues
  • Shortage of healthy foods

Marijuana For Pregnancy Nausea

Nausea, or morning sickness, is a very common pregnancy symptom. Some doctors often prescribe medical marijuana as a treatment for pregnancy- and chemotherapy-related nausea. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), some women use cannabis as a means to manage pregnancy-induced nausea.

However, no solid research exists to prove that cannabis is a safe or effective medication for nausea in pregnant women. It is always best to talk to your doctor about safe ways to use medical cannabis to combat nausea and vomiting during pregnancy.


Morning Sickness

Symptoms of Morning Sickness


What to Consider During Pregnancy?

If you use marijuana medicinally, this can be a touchy subject. You undoubtedly want to do the right thing for your child, but you also need to put your own health and wellbeing into consideration. If medical marijuana keeps your symptoms at bay and combats the negative effects of your condition, then you’ll need to deliberate on whether or not to use medical cannabis during your pregnancy.

Even if you have never tried medical cannabis prior to pregnancy, pregnancy-related conditions such as severe nausea or morning sickness can actually induce some expectant mothers to begin treating themselves with marijuana. The antiemetic properties of cannabis help combat both vomiting and nausea. It is potentially an extra benefit for the expecting mom since it is essential for them to retain proper nutrition to assist the fast-growing fetus.

Research Challenges in Marijuana Use During Pregnancy

Ethical issues have made it difficult for researchers to conclusively study the effects of using marijuana during pregnancy. For example, it would be unethical to evaluate the effects of marijuana by asking a group of expectant mothers to use the herb.

If at all the babies of these women develop any developmental problems or congenital abnormalities, the researchers would be held at fault for harming them. As a result, much existing research only involves women who report using marijuana during pregnancy.

Speak to Your Doctor Before Making a Decision

The most important consideration pregnant mothers should make before using medical cannabis is to speak with their doctor. Although some physicians will advocate for expectant women to completely stop using marijuana, a growing understanding of the health benefits of marijuana is spreading throughout the medical community.

Besides, if you are already taking medical marijuana for a chronic condition, it may be risky for you to stop cold turkey. Speak with your doctor to come up with a safer plan of action. Share your concerns openly for a better outcome.

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Get Your Medical Marijuana Card Today!

Having debunked the myths surrounding marijuana use and pregnancy, you should note that even if you live in a state that has legalized marijuana for medical purposes, you still need a valid medical marijuana card to access the substance. At MDBerry, we offer online evaluations to determine if medical cannabis is right for you and your condition.

Contact Us at MDBerry for medical marijuana card or click the banner below to book your appointment.

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