U.S. pregnant women becoming increasingly dependent on marijuana

U.S. pregnant women becoming increasingly dependent on marijuana

Use of marijuana among pregnant women in the United States has increased more than 100 per cent in just over a decade, a fresh analysis of multiple reports involving thousands of women revealed.

A team of researchers looked at reports from nearly 200,000 women from the age-group of 18 to 44 years, and found that pregnant women are increasingly using marijuana, sometimes to treat morning sickness.

In 2002, merely 2 per cent of women reported using marijuana during pregnancy as compared with 4 per cent in 2014. Use of the drug was found to be the highest for those age 18 to 25, with 7.5 per cent partaking in the last 30 days.

Oregon Health Officer Dr. Katrina Hedberg warned, “A half a glass of wine once or twice is very different than the fetal alcohol syndrome where the women are drinking a fifth of whiskey or whatever a day … If it's affecting your brain and goes through the placenta, it's going to affect your infant's brain.”

Now, Oregon health officials are preparing to launch a new survey to collect data on the use of marijuana among pregnant women as part of an annual survey to be conducted by the state on pregnancy risks.

Based on an analysis of the National Survey on Drug Use & Health, the study’s results were published in Dec. 19th issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).