What pregnant and breastfeeding moms need to know about marijuana use
posted by: Amber Johnson
Colorado’s legalization of retail marijuana for adults 21 and older still continues to be a divisive issue and as well it should be. But one thing that most of us can agree upon is that it is important to know about the laws and health effects that pertain to retail marijuana in Colorado.
Over the next year, Mile High Mamas is teaming up with Good to Know Colorado to help pregnant and breastfeeding mothers learn the facts about retail marijuana so they can make informed and educated decisions for themselves and their babies.
Good to Know is the nation’s first public education campaign regarding the legal, safe and responsible use of retail marijuana through the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE). It’s not about scare tactics but rather focuses on evidence-based best practices in the public health and environmental fields and plays a critical role in educating us so we can make informed choices.
Here are a few important facts that expecting and breastfeeding mothers should know:
- There is no known safe amount of marijuana use while pregnant or breastfeeding.
- Marijuana contains THC, or Tetrahydrocannabinol, the chemical that makes the person consuming it feel “high.”
- Whether marijuana is smoked or eaten, THC is passed to the baby when a woman uses marijuana during pregnancy or while breastfeeding.
- Exposure to THC in the womb may affect a baby’s brain development, making it hard for them to pay attention and learn as they grow older.
- The American Academy of Pediatrics says that mothers who are breastfeeding should not use marijuana.
- When a breastfeeding woman smokes or eats marijuana, THC gets into her breast milk and passes through to her baby.
- THC from marijuana use stays in breast milk much longer than alcohol does, so “pumping and dumping” doesn’t work the same way with marijuana.
- Because THC is stored in body fat, it stays in the mother’s body for a long time. A baby’s brain and body are made with a lot of fat. Since a baby’s brain and body may store THC for a long time, women shouldn’t use marijuana while pregnant or breastfeeding.
- Not all natural substances or plants are safe. Tobacco and poisonous berries are great examples. Because marijuana contains THC, it may harm a baby.
- Breathing marijuana smoke can be bad for both mother and baby. Marijuana smoke has many of the same chemicals as tobacco smoke. Some of these chemicals can cause cancer.
The health of Colorado moms and babies is of the utmost importance to us so wherever you stand on the legalization of retail marijuana, we hope you will follow us on our journey to educate you about marijuana use while you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Knowledge is power! To learn more, visit www.GoodtoKnowColorado.com/baby. In partnership with Mile High Mamas.