Can I smoke marijuana while pregnant?

Patient

Q: What happens if someone smokes marijuana while pregnant?

Doctor

A:   THC - the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, is known to pass from the mother to her unborn child through the placenta. This means that the unborn baby can be affected by any amount of marijuana taken by the pregnant woman, leading to a greater risk of complications.Smoking marijuana can disrupt the supply of oxygen and nutrients to the fetus, which can result in restrictions in the growth of the fetus, premature births, miscarriage, fetal death in the womb or even stillbirths. Babies born to mothers who have smoked marijuana may have a lower birth weight, difficulty in breathing, poorer eye-sight, poorer body temperature control or may even be born with a hole in the heart (ventricular septal defect).
These children are at a greater risk of developing asthma, chest infections, and other breathing problems such as wheezing.
Research suggests that these children may have other social and mental coping difficulties in school and adolescence and are at an increased risk of depression.
In case of having smoked marijuana during pregnancy or even a passive exposure to marijuana smoke, it is always advisable to share this information with your nurse or midwife or doctor. This will help your health care provider in being better equipped to manage all possible complications of the condition.

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