There are many healthy babies born every single day. Additionally, there are babies born in what would normally be considered healthy circumstances, yet he or she might have one or more health problems.
However, there is a slightly darker topic at hand here. This is one that a lot of people do not discuss as much as they tend to talk about babies born under normal conditions, and that is infants that are born to parents (and more specifically, mothers) who suffer from some form of addiction, whether it be to non-serious things like caffeine or much harder types of drugs.
Some people tend to think that because we do not talk about those babies as much, they must not have to suffer serious consequences for being born with addiction. But that is not the case at all, as mothers who are going through addictions while pregnant often give birth to children who are affected somehow by their addictions.
15 Birth Defects
Often times, things can occur during pregnancy for no particular reason at all, and in this case, it is usually not the fault of anyone and it is just something that happens sometimes. But, there are times when certain things that have happened to the child while in utero can be avoided completely, or at least the mother can give strong attempts at preventing it from happening.
Babies born with birth defects often fall into the grey area there. Sometimes those defects occur because of no specific reason, and sometimes they happen because of something the mother took part in during the time she was pregnant. By that I mean that many pregnant women run a risk of giving birth to a baby with a birth defect, but if the mother smoked, drank, or did any sort of drugs while pregnant than she might have actually increased her chances of her baby being born with defects.
14 Babies Suffer Withdrawal
At any stage in life, suffering from addiction, especially to any of the serious, hardcore drugs out there, is a horrible thing to go through. But there is one particular point in life when it can have much more serious consequences, and that is when the person going through it is an infant.
As adults, our organs and all of the major parts of our bodies are mostly fully formed, and they are therefore much more capable of fending off serious and non-serious sicknesses. This is always a good thing, especially when it comes to those who are trying to kick an addiction or two.
But going through withdrawals as an infant is a much more difficult task. This is because, at that stage, the human body is not fully formed and it is far from being grown and healthy enough to fight off illness.
13 Higher Risk For Seizures
Along with the fact that young boys and girls have a harder time getting rid of an addiction that began in utero, they can also suffer long lasting affects from it as well. According to recent studies, the number of children born to addiction is increasing at an alarming rate, more specifically within families who live in cities. The reports also show that these children are often times at a much higher risk for suffering from seizures than babies who are born under more stable conditions.
Additionally, seizures in newborn babies can appear slightly different that those that occur in older children and adults. Some, but not all signs of seizures can include the baby’s eyes rolling back into their head, vomiting, sweating, becoming weak and pale, and the child’s limbs appearing to be stiff. Their limbs may also twitch and jerk.
12 Low Birth Weight
Along with many other problems that might arise and show their ugly heads in this type of situation, a baby that is born to addiction could also be at a higher risk of having a low birth weight than that of a healthy child. Additionally, this can cause a whole new line of problems on its own, such as difficulty staying warm and an increased risk of infect at the time of birth and for a while afterwards.
On average, little boys and girls are born weighing in at about 8 pounds. However, the number of babies who are born at a lower weight than average in the United States appears to be increasing. Children who are considered to be born with this issue typically weigh less than 5 pounds and 8 ounces, which equals out to 2,500 grams.
11 Suffer From Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome
Parents worry a lot when they have a newborn baby, but the worrisome times are much worse when it comes to those who are born under less than healthy circumstances, such as children that are already addicted to some form of drug before they even make their grand entrance from the womb.
This is not only because the children are at higher risks for infections and illnesses as well as physical and mental disorders, but also because babies born in this scenario suffer from Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome.
This can cause the children in question to have fevers, vomiting, and gagging, among many other things. These symptoms coupled with the worries of raising a newborn in general can make things much harder on both the baby and the new mom and dad.
An interesting fact about this condition is that premature babies are often at a lower risk for it than those who are not. Also, they might be able to fight it off faster than full term children, and their symptoms might even appear to be less severe.
10 Serious Treatment
Just like when an adult is trying to kick the habit, babies have to go through that too, if their mothers took part in ingesting drugs while pregnant with the child. While treatments to the children differ in many cases, they always have to be weaned off of whatever drug is in their system at the time.
For example, there was a recent case of this that occurred in 2015. 31-year-old mother Ashley Kennedy, who had been battling a heroin addiction for eleven years, injected thirty bags of the drug every day, causing her daughter to be addicted to it before she was even born. After birth, the hospital fed the little girl small amounts of morphine and a blood pressure medication to help her with the withdrawal symptoms, which was a tough journey for the young child.
9 Addicted To Medication
Some of them are born addicted to medication that was prescribed legally. If you’re like most people, when the topic of drugs and the terrible journey of addiction comes up in a conversation, you think about illegal drugs, or perhaps drugs that might be perfectly legal, yet the person taking them was not the one whom they were intended for.
This is no different when it comes to mothers who are addicted to drugs while pregnant, and the innocent babies they give birth to. But sometimes, whether pregnancy is involved or not, people can become dependent on pills their doctors give them, whether it be for pain or some other health issue.
In this case, the difference between the children born to addiction and those who are born with no addictions before birth is that in the first scenario, the mother may have been prescribed the medication to assist her with any issues her body might have been having. Whereas in a healthy pregnancy, this is much less likely to happen. Additionally, in cases where a child becomes addicted to a type of drug whilst he or she is still residing in their mother’s womb, the baby has a higher chance of being born earlier than babies in a healthier situation.
8 Arrive Earlier Than Expected
Sometimes even the most healthy, happy little boys and girls were not born without issues. There are plenty of pregnancies all the time that seem like they should produce children who are extremely well, both physically and mentally, but sometimes things happen and there might be a few problems with the pregnancy or there might be none all the way up until birth.
But when a mother-to-be consumes drugs, and more specifically opiates, this can only increase the chances of her not having a healthy journey throughout pregnancy, or the fact that her child could be born with lasting affects for a long amount of time.
One of the ways little boys and girls can be affected by their mother’s drug use while in the womb is being born much too early. Even healthy babies are at risk for this, but those who are not quite as healthy due to addiction are at least twice as likely to be born prematurely. While this does not guarantee that the baby will not survive, sometimes the infants can still come out healthy after being cared for by doctors for a while.
7 Weak Immune Systems
Young boys and girls who are born under the addiction of drugs might have much less of a chance to enjoy living a healthy and illness free life. In fact, children who are born to those who use methamphetamine have been proven to have weaker immune systems than their non-addicted peers.
This can make them all the more fragile at birth, because even newborns in a normal situation are highly susceptible to illness early on in their lives. In fact, some say that children born to meth addicts also sometimes suffer from pre-birth strokes and a greater chance at experiencing brain damage.
Even children who do not suffer from addiction at the time of birth can have a difficult time fighting off certain bacteria and other factors that play into sickness and lack of good health. Babies born in the healthiest environments do not have fully developed immune systems until they are approximately 6 months old.
6 Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
Sometimes others will tell a pregnant woman that having an alcoholic beverage or two during her pregnancy will not be that bad. But, the reality is that no amount of alcohol has been proven safe for women who are carrying a child in their wombs, and therefore any alcohol should be considered unsafe and not taken lightly.
Babies who take in alcohol while in their mother’s womb might suffer from what is known as Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. This can cause countless issues for the child, including potential brain damage.
In addition to brain damage, there are other signs babies might show that indicate they suffer from this condition. These include but are not limited to slow growth within the womb as well as after birth, an upper lip that has a thinner than usual appearance, and a smaller brain than what is the normal size for babies that are the same age.
5 Drastically Different Lives
Yet another thing that can and often is affected in the case of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is the child’s behavior and social development, as well as other things that may not be realized until later in the person’s life, as the symptoms from this syndrome can take a while to show up, and are sometimes mistaken for something else.
When it comes to the symptoms of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome that might not become obvious until the child in question is older and no longer an infant, there are many issues linked to it. For example, children who suffer from this syndrome are much less likely to be able to process information while they are distracted, and they might also have more difficulty remembering certain details of places, events, and people. These problems can be especially difficult for young boys and girls once they begin going to school and trying to build social relationships.
4 Behavioral Problems
Any parent knows that raising kids can be the most rewarding yet difficult thing to do, as it comes with many worries and sometimes when their children act a certain way, some moms and dads might not know how to handle the situation. But, behavioral issues are very likely to worsen when it comes to those who were welcomed into the world by addiction and the terrible consequences that come with it.
In fact, it is known that there is a correlation between being born addicted to crack cocaine and having social issues later in life. When exactly these issues will show themselves cannot be pinpointed precisely, but there is a connection between the two. Some adolescent kids who have problems making friends, dealing with stress, behaving well in school, and dealing with other situations in their lives were born addicted to crack, and babies in that situation are often referred to as “crack babies.”
3 The Placenta Might Detach Itself
The previous statement is actually something that can very easily occur in pregnancies where there is no drug use at all. However, using this is much more likely to occur in non-healthy pregnancies, including those that include the mother-to-be engaging in drug or alcohol abuse.
In this case, the difference between a baby born in this situation and one who is not is the fact that these babies can be born early and it is similar to pre-term labor. Additionally, it might also cause the mother to lose a dangerous amount of blood.
Other causes of this include high blood pressure, scars from past surgeries, injury to the uterus, or the premature rupture of membranes, which is caused by an infection located in the uterus.
In some cases, it is possible that the baby can survive, depending on whether he or she can live outside of the womb when this happens. Also, depending on other circumstances, doctors may be able to give the mother medication to stop her from giving birth.
2 Nicotine Addiction
Many people use drugs like cocaine and meth, even despite the fact that they are illegal substances. So when it comes to the discussion of those who are born with addiction, as well as its affects and how to handle them, we must also include drugs that are legal and easily accessible every day.
Cigarettes have been a fairly common fixture in the lives of many men and women of all ages for years. This, like alcohol, is a slightly grey area in terms of the do’s and don’ts of pregnancy because there is no solid answer as to whether there is a safe amount of nicotine for pregnant women to have in their systems.
However, there is a known connection between smoking while pregnant and behavior issues with those same children when they are born. Babies addicted to nicotine tend to be more nervous and excitable than those who never ingested nicotine in the womb.
1 Cocaine Addiction
Perhaps one of the most dreaded words when it comes to pregnancy is miscarriage. In general, it is defined as the loss of the fetus before the twentieth week of pregnancy, but those words do not truly describe what the actual process is like when one is experiencing it.
Miscarriage is something that can happen in any pregnancy, and it is sometimes for no reason at all. That is part of what makes the first trimester so scary for some women because it is often in the first few weeks when this happens. But, miscarriage is much more likely to happen amongst women who use drugs like cocaine. Additionally, some babies who are exposed to this drug while they are still in their mother’s womb are extremely likely to have difficulties when it comes to eating.