Substance misuse in pregnancy has grown in the United States during the last three decades, resulting in around 225,000 children having prenatal exposure to illegal substances each year.
Routine screening and education of women of childbearing age continue to be the most significant measures to decrease prenatal addiction.
Cocaine usage during pregnancy can result in spontaneous abortion, premature delivery, placental abruption, and congenital abnormalities. Poor feeding, lethargy, and convulsions are all examples of neonatal problems resulting from drug addiction.
Cocaine users require particular prenatal care, and the infant may require additional supportive care.
More than half of all women in their reproductive years consume alcohol. In addition, tobacco use is prevalent among pregnant women, which proves addiction in pregnancy is not an uncommon issue.
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Risk Of Drug Abuse On Pregnant Women
Using drugs, alcohol, or cigarettes while pregnant exposes the mother and her growing baby to the chemical, which can have potentially harmful and even long-term impacts on children who are exposed.
Smoking during pregnancy increases the risk of stillbirth, infant mortality, SIDS, preterm birth, respiratory difficulties, decreased fetal development, and low birth weight.
Drinking during pregnancy can result in fetal alcohol spectrum disorders characterized by low birth weight and long-term cognitive and behavioral impairments.
Some medicines, especially opioids, can produce a withdrawal condition in babies known as neonatal abstinence syndrome if used during pregnancy. Babies with NAS are more likely to have seizures, respiratory issues, feeding difficulties, poor birth weight, and possibly die.
According to research, pregnant women and their infants benefit from evidence-based therapies, including drugs.
Although the FDA has licensed no drugs to treat opiate addiction in pregnant women, methadone maintenance coupled with prenatal care and a comprehensive drug treatment program can reduce many negative consequences of untreated heroin misuse.
However, babies exposed to methadone during pregnancy still require withdrawal treatment.
Buprenorphine, another opioid dependency medicine, has recently been proven to induce fewer NAS symptoms in neonates than methadone, resulting in shorter baby hospital admissions.
In general, it is critical to regularly monitor women attempting to cease using drugs while pregnant and give therapy as needed.
How To Fight Addiction In Pregnant Women?
Pregnant women often suffer from addiction more than average women because they understand the necessity to quit but can’t do so. This is why fighting the addiction problem becomes challenging for them.
Here we suggest 7 treatment options to help pregnant women fight the urge of addiction. Let’s take a look:
1: Medical Detox Centers
Pregnancy changes a woman's body chemistry and metabolism, affecting withdrawal timetables.
As a result, even when pregnant, women suffering from addiction are not urged to cease using drugs or drinking alcohol without expert assistance abruptly.
With opioid abuse, premature labor, fetal discomfort, and even fetal mortality can occur if these medicines are withdrawn after their bodies have developed a tolerance for it.
Medical detox offers pregnant women the safest environment and care while they seek to quit using hazardous substances.
2: Peer Support Groups
Pregnant women's peer support groups offer encouragement and mental fortitude to sustain long-term sobriety.
Several groups are expressly geared to promote a healthy social and peer network for pregnant women who are addicted.
These organizations can offer emotional support and empathy from people who have been through similar situations.
Joining these support groups makes the pregnant woman feels that she is not alone in this journey and helps her commit to the recovery.
3: Transitional Programs
Transitional programs and aftercare services can include educational programs, vocational training, relapse prevention programs, childcare services, and housing choices for mothers and their babies to help them achieve long-term recovery.
Pregnant women can join these programs to learn how they develop addiction habits and quit them gradually.
It can also help pregnant ladies fight social stigma as they try to recover from addiction. It teaches them mental discipline that helps them fight depression and anxiety during pregnancy.
4: Behavioral Therapies
Individual and group therapy sessions are both parts of the mental healthcare provided during addiction treatment.
Group sessions with other pregnant women may be conducted, emphasizing challenges particular to this demographic.
Women may learn parenting strategies and good stress coping mechanisms together during group skills sessions.
Behavioral treatments investigate what may have led to drug usage in the first place. They can assist women in developing new ways of thinking that will promote healthy behaviors and habits in the future.
5: Nutritional Services
Women can obtain obstetric care, prenatal examinations, and other required medical treatment while enrolled in a nutritional service program, which is essential for a safe pregnancy.
Residential addiction treatment clinics include nutritional assistance, balanced meal plans, and regulated sleep schedules to promote the health of both the mother and the unborn baby.
Nutritional services help pregnant women get back on track. It can help them get used to healthy eating habits so that the addiction urges don’t bother them anymore.
6: Outpatient Addiction Programs
Outpatient programs may be more accommodating, particularly for pregnant women and those who need to continue working.
Women in an outpatient addiction treatment program attend meetings and sessions throughout the day or evening and return home each night.
Childcare and transportation may be provided to these women. Outpatient care requires a solid and supportive home setting so that the pregnant lady can continue her treatment.
7: Inpatient Addiction Programs
In general, an inpatient treatment plan in which a person may stay in a specialized facility to get care and supervision 24 hours a day, seven days a week, is regarded as the ideal level of care for pregnant women.
These programs may also assist mothers after the baby is delivered, such as housing and daycare.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse advises a minimum of 90 days of therapy.
Treatment programs for pregnant women may be provided by the state or federal government or paid privately.
As you can see, we have outlined quite a few possibilities to fight addiction problems. If you know someone who is pregnant and suffering from addiction, you can suggest these services to them.
- However, if you want to know more about these, ping us in the comment section below. We will get back to you with an answer in no time.
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