Marijuana and pregnancy
During pregnancy, women are advised to avoid alcohol and recreational drugs which include marijuana. Drugs such as these can harm the unborn baby and in some cases, can lead to a premature birth.
There is a link between marijuana and developmental problems in babies which includes low birth weight.
But it is the developmental problems which cause the most concern.
Smoking and pregnancy is not an ideal mix and expectant mothers are advised to stop smoking to reduce the risk of health problems for both them and their unborn baby.
This equally applies to marijuana.
Risks of marijuana during pregnancy
There are potential risks to the baby during pregnancy if the mother continues to use marijuana. These apply whether she smokes marijuana on its own or with tobacco as a ‘joint’.
These include sudden infant death syndrome or ‘cot death’, premature birth or a condition called ‘placenta praevia’(low lying placenta).
Placenta praevia occurs when the placenta is near to or overlaps the cervix (opening to the womb) which causes vaginal bleeding.
THC and the unborn baby
If you smoke marijuana during your pregnancy then this has serious consequences for your unborn child. The primary chemical in marijuana known as ‘tetrahydrocannabinol’ or THC for short can have a harmful effect on the baby’s brain which also affects their behaviour.
Even relatively small amounts can disrupt brain maturation, especially emotional responses, and this may persist into childhood and beyond.
A baby who has been exposed to THC exhibits the following symptoms:
- Hitch pitched crying
- Fidgety/unable to respond to visual stimuli
Effects of marijuana during childhood
Once the child starts school these problems become more apparent. The child will demonstrate behavioural problems such as a lack of concentration, difficulty in problem solving, unable to memorise information and behavioural problems.
It is difficult to say whether these problems persist throughout childhood and into adulthood. These problems may worsen during this time or new problems appear as the child reaches their teenage years.
But there may be other factors involved. Developmental problems can occur for a variety of reasons which include recreational drugs so it is difficult to pinpoint an exact cause.
Guide to Marijuana
- Guide to Marijuana
- What is marijuana?
- Short history of marijuana
- How is marijuana used?
- Types of marijuana
- Herbal cannabis (marijuana)
- Cannabis oil
- Genetic predisposition and marijuana
- Addiction and marijuana
- Effects of marijuana
- Short term effects of marijuana
- Long term effects of marijuana
- Physical effects of marijuana
- Marijuana and the brain
- Marijuana and the heart
- Marijuana and the lungs
- Marijuana and fertility
- Psychological effects of marijuana
- Marijuana and memory
- Marijuana and learning
- Marijuana and social behaviour
- Marijuana and psychosis
- Marijuana and insomnia
- Marijuana and anxiety
- Marijuana and depression
- Marijuana and cancer
- Marijuana and pregnancy
- Medical use of marijuana
- The law and marijuana
- Young people and marijuana
- Treatment for marijuana addiction
- Marijuana facts and fiction
- Marijuana FAQs