Substance Abuse and Pregnancy

3 March 2017

Substance abuse during pregnancy is an ongoing problem. These poor infants can’t defend themselves or stop the harmful substances from entering their body it’s all the desion of the mother but the child is the one who has to suffer the consequences and deal with the long term effect that substance abuse can cause hopefuly this essay will educate about the different risk involved for the mother and for the baby when the mother chooses to smoke, drink alcohol, or use drugs during pregnancy.

With the research and facts provided, hopefully people will know how dangerous this and how bad it is effecting the future of society society. Drinking alcohol during pregnancy can cause low birth weight and a number of other defects. Smoking during pregnancy may cause the baby to be born with an addiction to nicotine. Drug use during pregnancy can cause death, low birth weight, blindness and other defects. Women who drink alcohol, smoke cigarettes or use drugs should really consider stopping if they become pregnant because of the possibility of long term damage these things can cause the baby. Substance abuse during pregnancy

Substance abuse during pregnancy is an ongoing problem, sad thing is that some infants don’t make it, and the one’s that do survive sometimes have to live with a birth defect. Sometimes a mother can do everything rite and baby can still be born with a birth defect. When babies are born with signs of substance abuse they are tested if any illegal drugs or alcohol are found the mother is not able to take child home and the hospital contacts child protective services. Alcohol use, smoking, and illegal drug use during pregnancy are three of the most common causes of low birth weight and birth defects.

Alcohol use First, alcohol use is a common cause of low birth weight some women who drink during pregnancy say they didn’t think it would hurt the fetus , even light drinking is not safe, no level of alcohol use during pregnancy has been proven safe. “Drinking alcohol while pregnant can cause FASD’S (Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder’s)”. (Leigh, 2007, p. 47) A growing fetus can’t break down alcohol as fast as an adult body can so the substance stays in the baby’s blood stream longer which can cause delays in growth, most babies born to mothers who drink are born premature.

The effects of substance abuse during pregnancy can be mild or severe, baby may be born with mental retardation, behavioral and or learning delays, and alcohol use can harm organs like the heart and sometimes can be severe enough to cause death. Smoking Next, Smoking, smoking during pregnancy exposes the fetus to very harmful chemicals such as nicotine, carbon monoxide, and tar, these chemicals make it hard for babies to get oxygen which can harm the brain, and also smoking can damage baby’s lungs.

Mothers who smoke during pregnancy are more likely to experience a high risk pregnancy which is when your chances of having a miscarriage are severely high. These women are more likely to experience vaginal bleeding, pain and cramping during pregnancy. “ Smoking during pregnancy can also cause expecting mothers to experience placenta abruption which is when the placenta peels away partially or almost completely from the uterine wall before delivery” ( Smoking During Pregnancy. 2009. ) these complications cause babies to be more likely to experience prematurity which is when a baby is born before reaching 37 weeks of development.

Babies born prematurely are at risk for lifelong disabilities like cerebral palsy and or learning problems. Illegal Drug Use Finally illegal drugs, using illegal drugs during pregnancy can be very harmful to mother and fetus. Drug use can cause miscarriage, low birth weight, premature labor, fetal death and in some cases maternal death. Just like alcohol consumption drugs used by the mother enter the blood stream of the baby and remains in baby’s body longer; elimination of drug is faster in adults. Babies born to mothers use illegal drugs during pregnancy have a 25% increased chance of premature labor” (Mothers risk, 2011. ) Some of the physical effects of drug use during pregnancy include but are not limited to smaller hear size; Babies may also be born with missing or not completely developed limbs, and may be growth restricted. Babies who mother began drug use later in pregnancy are at risk of being born addicted to whatever drug mother was using during pregnancy and experience with drawl symptoms like problems with feeding, tremors, and muscle spasms.

Conclusion Alcohol use, Smoking and illegal drug use continue to be a problem causing low birth weight and birth defects these babies the ones who make it through that is are forced to live with these problem because of the choices of the mother. . References Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders. Updated 5/2/06. Maternal Alcohol Use During Breast-Feeding and Infant Mental and Motor Development. New England Journal of Medicine, volume 321, number 7, (August 17, 1989) pages 425-430 .

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