Addiction Treatment for Pregnant Women


Pregnancy can be wondrous time for a mother, but it can also be a difficult and a little bit of a scary time as well, especially if the mother is an addict.  During any pregnancy, it is the most vital developmental stage for a human and when the mother is abusing alcohol, substances, and even cigarettes, she putting the developing baby in extreme harm.  Addiction treatment for pregnant women is very important, for not only the mother, but even more for the baby that is inside her!

Why Would a Pregnant Woman use?

If you never been pregnant it may be difficult to understand all the mixed emotions a pregnant woman can through in just an hour!  Imagine being super happy, to frustrated, to mad, then to sad…it is sort of like the weather in Missouri!  Addiction can be set off from certain factors in life like stress, issues in life, lifestyle, low self confidence, feelings of loneliness, and other issues in their lives they have been through. Possibly the mother is a very active addict and does not know how to “just quit” while she is pregnant.

Addiction treatment for pregnant women

Drug Choices

The most popular drug choices for pregnant women is cocaine, alcohol and opiates.  Women who are dependent on opioids is mostly prescription drugs, Vicodin and Oxycontin.  Heroin, benzodiazepines, poly-substance abuse, and meth are all known to have extreme harmful effects on the fetus.  However, the two worst addictions that effects the fetus is alcohol and tobacco.

Addiction treatment for pregnant women

Get Help

Addictions can have a negative impact not only to the mother, but to the unborn baby that is growing inside her.  Anything that the woman abuses can be transmitted into the baby’s blood and putting it at risk from developing different types of abnormalities and defects.  It could also have a negative effect on the baby’s mental development, stunted growth, low birth weight, premature.  The child can even be born with the same addictions as the mother.  The worst that could happen, is the baby does not survive the pregnancy or dies of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).

Addiction treatment for pregnant women

The pregnant mother who is abusing alcohol and substances, could putting her own health at risk.  She could suffer from high blood pressure, not gaining the appropriate weight, go into early labor, anxiety, depression, anemic disorders and skin infections.  The mother could also be putting her self into risk of getting sexually transmitted diseases, HIV and AIDS.  Even worse, she could overdose and not only kill herself, but the baby growing inside her.

Barriers to Treatment for a Pregnant Woman

There are barriers pregnant women can face when seeking treatment for alcohol or substance abuse compared to those who are not pregnant. Depending on how serve the pregnant woman’s addiction is, many treatments that actually help addicts can be very intensive, too intensive for a pregnant woman.

Pregnant women will face societal stigma, fear of losing custody, would not attend mixed-gender treatments, lack of insurance, and no access to transportation or do not have childcare for other children they may have while they seek help from a treatment center.

Addiction treatment for pregnant women

There have been studies that if woman is able to quit using early on in her pregnancy, she is greatly increasing the chances of delivering a healthy, unharmed baby.  Women who are pregnant and suffering from an addiction should immediately seek help from a treatment center to save her self and her baby!  Addiction during the pregnancy only results in serious problems!  Some states will take custody of a child that is born and tested positive with any type of drug in the baby’s system.  If you are pregnant or know someone who is pregnant and addicted to drugs or alcohol, please contact Bridgeway Behavioral Health today at or call 866-758-1152.

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