09 Nov Born Addicted | The Shocking Truth
New studies have revealed that consumption of illegal or legal drugs during pregnancy have a direct impact on the health of unborn fetuses. If you drink, smoke, or ingest any harmful drugs during pregnancy, the fetus will also feel the influence of those dangerous substances. Pregnant mothers addicted to any drugs, alcohol, or nicotine, not only putting their lives in danger, but also risking the life of their unborn baby.
Drug-Addicted Newborn Babies in the US Quadruple
Figures reveal that the number of newborn babies addicted to drugs in the US has increased by four times in just one decade. According to the New England Journal of Medicine, every half hour a baby is born in the US addicted to drugs (painkillers, heroin, cocaine or mephedrone) that his/her mother was consuming during pregnancy.
In 2004, the count of newborns dependent on narcotics was 7 in every 1,000, which jumped to 27 in every 1,000 by the year 2013. The rise in newborn addictions might be correlated to a rising epidemic of painkillers and heroin use in women. These children are born with some disabilities, due to dependency on the drugs like methadone and heroin, while in the fetus stage.
The number of newborns with addiction is highest in areas of Mississippi, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Alabama. These are some of the major-hit states where hospitalizations for addicted newborns ratio increased from 955 in 2013 to 1,049 in 2014. That’s a 48% increase in a single year!
Effect of Drugs on Newborns
Drug consumption during pregnancy can invoke dire symptoms in the baby, such as tremors, muscle spasms, vomiting, and diarrhea. It can also cause low blood sugar, stunted growth, and learning difficulties during the consequential growth years. Babies born addicted can suffer from several long-term effects as well including severe withdrawal symptoms without even actually touching a drug themselves. Long-term effects can also be seen and involve severe learning disabilities, organ damage, hyperactivity, and behavior problems.
If a baby is born into this kind of environment, addiction will take root at childhood. The baby will grow up in a drug influenced environment making it impossible for the child to have a healthy upbringing. The only way an addicted child can lead a normal life is with severe detox treatments and perhaps the extended long-term care of a sober living NY program.
It is Safer to Treat the Mothers than the Babies
It’s very difficult to even try to imagine a newborn who has to cope with such symptoms of withdrawal like diarrhea, joint stiffness, tremors, sleeplessness, and convulsions, but in many cases the infants are forced into this struggle. The pain these newborn babies face are so intense and severe that doctors are forced to mix morphine with breast milk to calm them down. The babies have to spend the first few weeks of their life (13-19 days) receiving intense rehab treatments. This is done to wean babies off the drugs and can have adverse effects on the DNA of the baby. It is crucial that women exposed to drugs while pregnant get treated first for their addiction, so their babies can survive and won’t have to go through the harsh withdrawal and ordeal of being instituted in rehab treatment. If the circumstances are unavoidable there is a treatment introduced for pregnant women who are addicted to opioids or any hard drugs such as heroin. Methadone is widely used and has been helpful in treating pregnant women suffering from addiction. The research has shown that babies from mothers who have been treated during pregnancy respond far better than babies from mothers who didn’t get any treatment at all.
So, it’s not too late to seek help. Even if you are a drug addict and pregnant, you can get treatment and make sure that your baby has the opportunity to be born addiction free. If any of your loved ones need help, you can suggest addiction treatment. There are specialized sober living facilities all across the United States that can help those who are struggling with addiction to start a drug-free life with their healthy and drug free newborn baby.