More women are using marijuana during pregnancy, and it could be putting their babies at risk

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A research letter published Monday in JAMA Pediatrics found that marijuana use among pregnant women has risen from 3 to 5% since 2002.
Though the reason for the uptick is unclear, some attribute it to the legalization of marijuana across the country.
The risks of using marijuana while pregnant have not been as heavily studied as cigarette and alcohol use, both of which have decreased among pregnant women in the last 16 years.
Some risks include premature birth and poor visual-motor coordination.

While cigarette and alcohol use during pregnancy is on the decline, marijuana use during those nine-plus months is on the rise.

On Monday, JAMA Pediatrics published a research letter revealing that marijuana use among pregnant women has risen in the US since 2002.

The letter, which looked at data from the National Survey of Drug Use and Health between 2002 to 2016, evaluated responses from more than 12,000 women over the last 16 years. In 2002, 2.9% of women surveyed reported using cannabis while pregnant. In 2016, that numbers had almost doubled, reaching 5%.

Despite the increase in marijuana use, researchers found that cigarette and alcohol use among pregnant women had dropped in that same time span: 9.59% to 8.43% for alcohol use and 17.5% to 10.34% for cigarette use.

Still, the question remains: why are more moms-to-be using marijuana? And how could this marijuana use impact a child’s health?

Some moms-to-be may use marijuana to deal with pregnancy symptoms

The reasons for the uptick is unclear, as the researchers merely evaluated usage, but relaxed marijuana laws across the country may have contributed to the increase in use, according to Time reporter Jamie Ducharme. Although that may be true, as ease of access can lead to more use, it doesn’t quite explain why moms-to-be are …read more

Source:: Business Insider


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