Addicted at Birth

by - January 10, 2018

Born withdrawing!
Life between newborn and 10 months

Sometimes people may make the wrong decisions which fundamentally may affect their own lives, but sometimes these choices may affect the people around them. Even unborn children.

We all know drinking while pregnant is frowned upon but do we really know why? Children exposed to alcohol in the womb may suffer with FAS (foetal alcohol syndrome) which has a massive spectrum ranging from facial features to severe learning difficulties.

Consuming drugs whilst pregnant is less talked about and what is even more worrying is that there is a massive lack of information regarding this, withdrawing babies and the effects caused.

When a pregnant woman mis-uses drugs during pregnancy, any risk she poses to herself are also passed to the unborn baby such as :
heart attacks
Less oxygen to the placenta
Low birth weight
Premature birth etc.

Being born is pretty tough for any baby to deal with, but imagine being born addicted to illegal drugs and your source of drugs being taken away without warning and there being absolutely nothing you can do about it, except cry.
We’ve all watched Jeramy Kyle and seen how difficult addicts find it to quit the habit. They’re fully grown adults and quite often fail.
Fortunately babies don’t have a choice and will be weaned but this can be a painful process for the baby whilst their body goes into shock and they suffer from withdrawals.

Depending on the severity of the withdrawal, babies may occasionally be given drugs to help them wean, however most babies will go cold turkey and have to see it out.

A withdrawing baby will take approximately 6 months to be fully weaned and officially signed off.

Signs a baby is withdrawing -

I have spoken to several nurses and maternity staff who all say you can immediately tell a baby is withdrawing from his/her cry. The cry is intensely higher pitched.
Other symptoms are that the Baby is often harder to settle, has tremors, uncontrollable and excessive sneezing, extremely sensitive skin (which depending on the severity can be nearly untouchable and could turn everyday fun tasks into something scary and painful such as, changing clothes, bath time and even cuddles).

Luckily as stated, the symptoms don’t last forever and hopefully cease after approximately 6 months.

From 6 months onwards it is hoped that babies will be fully withdrawn and be able to do exactly what babies do! Eat, sleep, poo and play.....oh and lets not forget crying too!

From personal experiences, the previous withdrawing has had no effect with learning, development or milestones.

Unfortunately not enough research has been done to show the long term effect of
drug use but it is believed and hoped that there are none. However, some believe learning difficulties may arise.

In my next withdrawing blog i will have information from parents who have experience bringing up children that are born withdrawing.

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