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Study: Pregnant Pot Use On The Rise

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Cannabis use among pregnant women in the United States has been increasing in recent years – from 2.4 percent in 2002 to 3.9 percent in 2014, according to research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).

That’s a 62.5 percent increase, people …

This uptick comes at a time when cannabis potency is also on the rise … which is elevating concerns about its expanded use by pregnant women.

According to an article published this week in JAMA, “expanding use of cannabis among pregnant and lactating women (as likely will occur with legalization) may lead to increased risk from fetal and child exposures.”

That’s according to a trio of doctors who have studied the issue, including Lauren M. Jansson of the department of pediatrics at John Hopkins.

“Prenatal THC exposure has been documented to adversely affect infant neurobehavior and child development up through the teen years, and postnatal exposures may compound prenatally acquired deficits,” Jansson and her colleagues wrote.

Is that true?  We’re not sure … but we do agree with the doctors’ conclusion that “as cannabis potency and maternal use continue to increase, it will be critical to systematically evaluate the long-term outcomes of THC-exposed individuals, inform breastfeeding guidelines, and identify interventions to manage resultant developmental, psychiatric, and behavioral effects at different developmental stages among THC-exposed individuals.”

That makes sense …

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As this news site noted in a pair of articles earlier this week (here and here), we support the decriminalization of marijuana and other drugs for medical and recreational purposes.  Always have, always will.

We believe it is a liberty issue … and an economic one.

Of course, we have also attempted to balance our coverage with an appreciation for the necessary limits of decriminalization – while also letting opponents have their say on the matter (something we will continue to do).

One of the limits we have acknowledged?  When one individual’s use of drugs imposes upon the greater liberty of another … 

That’s exactly what happens in the case of prenatal drug use … of course its worth noting the same can be said of excessive prenatal alcohol consumption.  In both cases, one individual’s exercise of an otherwise completely permissible liberty becomes an unfair imposition on the greater liberty of the unborn child.

Our view?  It’s simple: If you’re pregnant, join the 96.1 percent of mothers who don’t consume cannabis.

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