More Women Are Using Marijuana During Pregnancy
By Selena Darlim
28 December, 2017, 01:10
Prenatal marijuana use also increased among women of all ages.
From 2009 to 2016, marijuana use among moms-to-be jumped from 4.2% to 7.1%, the study said.
The legalization of marijuana may have contributed to the increase in use found by the study, KABC reported.
"Because of the possibility of concurrent use of marijuana and other substances of abuse, the evidence of its direct association with preterm labor, fetal growth restriction, preterm birth, low birthweight and stillbirth is still debatable, though these adverse effects lean more towards an increased likelihood of occurrence", Yankey continued. The age ranges of the sample included females aged 12 to 17 years (1.4 percent), 18 to 24 years (15.8 percent), 25 to 34 years (61.6 percent), and more than 34 years (21.2 percent).
The findings also were limited to data on pregnant women within one health care system in a limited geographic area of California.
Many pregnant women are turning to the drug to treat morning sickness or anxiety associated with pregnancy.
"Marijuana is [one of] the most commonly used illicit drugs during pregnancy, and its use is increasing", the study says.
Californians voted to legalise recreational use of the drug in 2016. "California legalized medical marijuana use in 1996, so they have grown up with the idea of it not only not being illegal but being a medical therapy", said Horsager-Boehrer, who was not involved in the study. It is now legal in 29 states and Washington, DC. "So I think the idea that use is rising is just because of the greater legal exposure to marijuana that women have today versus 20 years ago".
Teens and young adults reported a particularly high use of marijuana compared to women over 24.
Kelly Young-Wolff, the study's lead researcher and Dr. Nancy Goler said their study shows how marijuana might potentially harm an unborn child.
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