*Disclaimer: Always consult your physician*
Each year, there is an average of four million babies born in the US. There are expecting mothers who really feel the “pregnancy” glow, but that is not always the case with each expecting mother. Some experience moderate to severe discomforts, including morning sickness, headaches, backaches, insomnia, mood swings, followed with depression. Studies show that anywhere from 10-25% of all expecting mothers use cannabis for treating their pregnancy symptoms. Pregnant mothers who decided to use medical cannabis usually experience astounding relief.
What are the studies showing? Unbelievably, there have been no US studies of prenatal outcomes in the “medical marijuana” category. The medical risks to a pregnant mother from moderate medical cannabis is virtually nonexistent. How about the negative effects on a prenatal baby? Any research coming from the US falls entirely under the “recreational marijuana” category.
Recreational = Heavy Daily Use
Medical = PRN (as needed) moderate use
“What few prenatal marijuana studies that have been conducted in the US contain methodological flaws that undermine their credibility.” There are no studies that has yet tracked pregnancy outcomes when mothers only consume cannabis. All studies that have been conducted with recreational cannabis mothers, where majority also abuse substances known to be harmful to developing babies- daily. Those substances are usually cigarettes and alcohol. This has made it extremely hard to determine if any developing babies have suffered harm from a mother’s moderate consumption of cannabis alone.
Studies from England, Canada, etc. have shown that heavy daily recreational use of cannabis during pregnancy has no increased risk for miscarriage, premature birth, pregnancy complications, or birth defects. However, daily cannabis use can impact the fetal brain development, which tends to really manifest by ages 3-4. Some children can be negatively impacted in verbal skills, memory retention, and IQ’s. By school age, they no longer present those memory deficits. Long story short, it is best not to partake in daily heavy recreational use of cannabis, which goes back to PRN use, using only when needed.
What about moderate medical cannabis use during pregnancy? Again, to date, there are no studies to prove one way or another. All the studies that have been conducted fall under the heavy daily “recreational use” category. These studies that the US medical establishment uses to justify their anti-cannabis vs. pro-pharmaceutical bias.
Morning sickness is one of the several symptoms that commonly accompanies pregnancy. Eighty percent of pregnant women suffer from morning sickness, especially in the first trimester, often lasting through the second trimester. In severe cases, it can result in malnutrition and is therefore harmful to both the baby and mother. What does the US medical establishment recommend? They recommend pharmaceutical drugs, a few of which are FDA approved. These drugs can have unpleasant and even dangerous side effects, especially for developing babies.
The most common drug prescribed by doctors for morning sickness is Ondansetron, also known as Zofran. This drug is not prescribed to expecting mothers because its “safe,” but because it’s “effective.” Like 98% of all other morning sickness drugs, it is not FDA approved for use during pregnancy.
East Cascade Women’s group, along with other studies have shown Ondansetron to be risky for both developing babies and expecting mothers. For babies, those risks include an increased risk of congenital heart disease, as well as cleft palate malformations. For pregnant women, it can potentially cause fatal cardiac arrhythmias and ECG abnormalities.
Back pains, headaches and other aches and pains are also quite common in pregnancies. The most comment doctor recommended pain medication is acetaminophen, also known as Tylenol. However, using acetaminophen during pregnancy is associated with an increased risk of ADHD and hyperkinetic disorder in children. Even though Tylenol is a safe and mild pain reliever, it can be quite risky for prenatal babies. Doctors also prescribe pregnant women sleeping medications, none of which have been clinically evaluated and proven safe for pregnancy use.
When I have done my personal research, I cannot tell you how many articles that stated everything that is stated above, is false. I read articles stating that using any amounts of cannabis during pregnancy will result in life altering results including still birth, fetal growth restrictions, preterm birth, even behavioral issues. I recommend being open and honest with your doctors and continue to research. Not all doctors are against cannabis use during pregnancy.
*Sources come from The Evolution Magazine April 2021 edition, page 46: and East Cascade Women’s Group
Terpenes that help with nausea/appetite loss/morning sickness:
Alpha-Pinene and Beta-Pinene
Terpenes that help with pain:
Strains that help with nausea/appetite loss/morning sickness:
Strains that help with pain: