Although most people are probably aware of the dangers of drinking alcohol while pregnant, the same threshold has not been reached yet with regards to marijuana use. A new study shows that marijuana use during pregnancy continues to rise among moms-to-be in the United States. In fact, the numbers indicate that use has more than doubled between the years 2002 and 2017.
The new research was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association and analyzed data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, according to CNN. To get to their findings, researchers looked at information from 4,400 pregnant women and 133,900 non-pregnant women aged 12 to 44. Questions asked related to past-month marijuana use, the number of days it was used, and whether it was used daily or near-daily. Researchers defined that as more than 20 days per month.
Overall, according to the study, marijuana use during pregnancy increased from 3.4 percent in 2002 to 7 percent in 2017. And for just the first trimester, use increased from 5.7 percent to 12.1 percent in the same time period.
That jump in use over the first trimester could have something to do with morning sickness, which about 70 percent of pregnant women struggle with, according to the Cleveland Clinic. Another study conducted in 2018, published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine, as LiveScience reported, found that women with severe morning sickness in the first trimester used marijuana at a rate four times higher than those without. And for those with mild morning sickness, the rate was twice as high.