The legalization of marijuana has enabled many entrepreneurs to open marijuana dispensaries. A recent study found that nearly 70% of marijuana dispensaries in Colorado recommend cannabis products to manage nausea and vomiting often accompanying early pregnancy related morning sickness. Very few dispensaries encouraged discussion with a health care provider without the investigator’s prompting. Smoking marijuana during pregnancy has been linked to miscarriage, stillbirth, small for gestational age babies, and preterm delivery. Smoking marijuana during pregnancy has also been found to lead to irritable behavior in infants. There is also no credible evidence that marijuana can help ease morning sickness symptoms. Metabolites of cannabis have been measured in human breast milk from breast feeding mothers who regularly smoke marijuana. The long term neurobehavioral effects on the developing brains of these children remains to be studied. As cannabis legislation expands, policy and educator efforts should include not only reproductive age women but also those in the marijuana business so that mothers and mothers to be are sufficiently warned about the growing hazards to their pregnancy and their children.
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For more information on marijuana and pregnancy, please see these additional blogs: