Can a Pregnant Woman Take CBD?

May 20, 2022

There is no doubt that cannabidiol (CBD) has become one of the most sought-after products in the natural remedy space. Its many health benefits, some proven by science, have raised its profile recently. As a result, many people are turning to this nature-based solution for their ailments. 

However, is CBD for everyone? Specifically, can a pregnant woman take CBD? 

 

Is CBD bad for pregnant women?

 

CBD is one of the two primary cannabinoids. Together with tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), they are the most studied and well-known chemical compounds of cannabis. 

As researchers learn more about CBD and its immense benefits, its acceptance among the general population has gone up considerably. For example, a 2020 SingleCare survey showed that one-third of Americans had used CBD.

Another Gallup poll indicated that 64% of American adults "were familiar with CBD." Therefore, there is no question that cannabidiol is a fast-growing alternative health trend in many western countries. 

You may be wondering whether you could use CBD during pregnancy. After all, it has not been shown to have any adverse effects on humans, right? Well, hold on.

Pregnancy can be a trying period, especially if you are a first-timer. It can come with several unpleasant side effects like nausea and vomiting, persistent backaches, fatigue, anxiety, and sleeplessness. However, not all pharmaceutical prescriptions are safe for you once the baby is on the way.

Therefore, going natural seems logical.

While CBD has curative effects on most of these conditions, e.g., nausea, pain, and anxiety, the consensus seems to be that pregnant women should not use CBD. In fact, the FDA strongly warns against the use of this compound while pregnant or nursing. 

Medical experts are equally reluctant to sanction its use among pregnant women, primarily due to a lack of research evidence on its effects on the unborn child. As a result, medical practitioners propose it is better to err on the side of caution. 

The much we know about CBD's effect on pregnancy is gleaned from a study investigating CBD's effects on pregnant animals. The researchers noted that high CBD doses in pregnant test animals caused reproductive system problems in developing male fetuses. 

With the proliferation of CBD products on the market, regulatory bodies like FDA are concerned that quality may be an issue. A recent lab data analysis showed that 25% of CBD products were untested. The contaminants included trace metals, microbial contaminants, pesticide residue, and THC. Naturally, you don't want to expose your unborn child to these toxic compounds.

 

Can a pregnant woman take CBD?

Pregnant woman standing in front of a light blue wall. 

 

Some women tried CBD products to get relief from pregnancy-related complications with varying degrees of success. For example, Maggie Frank, a mom and the National Educator for PlusCBD Oil, attests to the efficacy of CBD in managing a wide range of pregnancy-related symptoms like stress, anxiety, sleeplessness, morning sickness, pains, cramps, and food cravings.

In 2015, Frank turned to CBD Oil after consulting her doctor to manage hyperemesis gravitum (severe morning sickness) when she was pregnant. She reached this decision after the conventional medicine prescribed worsened her symptoms instead of making her feel better.

So, she started with 3 milligrams of CBD oil and got relief on the very first day. For someone who was already on bed rest at just four months into the pregnancy, Frank was able to move around without feeling faint and eat without vomiting soon after. Throughout her pregnancy, Frank registered reduced stress and anxiety, better moods and sleep, and fewer pains and aches. 

Jennifer Farris, a yoga instructor, health coach, and a mom who gave birth to her son in September 2018, also approves of the use during pregnancy. She used CBD oils to help fight her anxiety and improve her sleep quality. Further, days into CBD use, her joint pains stopped, as did changes to her body. Jennifer preferred CBD gummies infused with CBD oil and ascertained they were third-party tested to ensure they did not have THC.

What do professionals say?

Many, if not all, medical professionals express concern and are reluctant to recommend CBD for pregnant women. This is due, in part, to limited knowledge of the precise action mechanisms of CBD and an existing body of research that suggests that cannabinoids could be harmful to mothers and their unborn babies

There are no longitudinal research findings shedding light on what happens years after one uses CBD while pregnant. This is a fact that any woman using or intending to use CBD must consider in their decisions.

It has been shown that CBD can react with other medications and affect the intended effect of these medicines. Moreover, CBD can potentially cause some side effects. The most common have been diarrhea, appetite changes, and fatigue. 

So the main concern with CBD stems from the lack of conclusive research on its impact on fetal development and health. The philosophy seems to be that "just because there is nothing negative does not mean it is positive."

Nonetheless, many countries are legalizing medical marijuana based on research findings that highlight the immense benefits of CBD. For example, in 2018, the United States lifted a federal ban on hemp – a move that pro-cannabis advocates maintain will allow more studies on CBD.   

It will also allow lawmakers to develop and implement manufacturing practices and standards for the nascent medical marijuana industry. This will ultimately lead to safer and high-quality CBD products for users. 

 

Can pregnant women drink CBD?

 

The straightforward answer to this question is NO. 

Many organizations do not support the use of CBD by pregnant women. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) expressly prohibits the use of CBD for therapeutic or medicinal purposes during and after pregnancy during lactation.

The main reason is that reports have shown that THC can cross the placenta and end up in breast milk. It may potentially interfere with brain development in babies and cause stillbirth at 20 weeks or beyond during gestation.

Given the close similarity in chemical composition between CBD and THC, ACOG says it would be premature to suppose that CBD would react differently. Unless you are using a pure CBD extract, it is not easy to say whether the CBD product you are using does not contain THC. 

Many CBD products have been tested to reveal THC amounts surpassing the 0.3% legal limit. Since the FDA does not regulate CBD products, it is not easy to ascertain their purity.

It is understandable why a soon-to-be-mom would perk up when CBD's anti-nausea and pain relief properties are fronted. However, Catherine Monk, a Ph.D. holder and professor of medical psychology at Columbia University Irving Medical Center, argues that there is insufficient data to determine whether it is safe. 

Although conventional medicines may also have their side effects, at least they have been studied, so medical caregivers know what to expect. 

 

Can pregnant women eat CBD?

 

Pregnant women are advised not to use CBD in any form or shape. As has been mentioned severally throughout this article, the effect of CBD on unborn babies is largely unknown. Therefore, until further studies on CBD provide more insight, it is best to keep off CBD if you are pregnant.

 

Health Benefits from CBD

 

The rise and rise of CBD are attributed to the many health benefits it confers to users. Even though research on its properties is still developing, cannabidiol is already being touted as a natural super remedy for many health conditions. Here are some areas where CBD may eventually turn out to be helpful.

 

CBD for Pregnancy Nausea

 

Animal studies show that CBD could help alleviate nausea due to its interaction with serotonin receptors. Serotonin also regulates various body functions such as mood and your sense of wellbeing. At the same time, it induces nausea when you have ingested food or substances that are potentially toxic.

 

CBD for Morning Sickness

 

Animal studies demonstrate that CBD might suppress nausea and vomiting, making it a beacon of hope for pregnant mothers suffering from bouts of morning sickness. Remember, however, that humans and animals may potentially respond differently to chemical compounds like CBD. In other words, if CBD worked on a mouse does not mean it will work on you.

CBD for Anxiety

 

The action of CBD on anxiety is well established. Studies have shown that this compound can help reduce anxiety and improve sleep. One such study conducted in 2019 reported that 79.2% of the participants reported lower anxiety levels, and another 66.7% said they could sleep much better. Throughout the experiment, sleep quality varied, but anxiety levels remained low, proving that CBD may have 

Such results are promising and indicate that pregnant women may use CBD to find relief from anxiety and insomnia. The key is to start small (10 – 20 mg doses) as always and work your way up gradually. 

FOCL Premium CBD Drops will soothe your mind and body. Our products are doctor-formulated and rigorously tested to ensure you get the best quality CBD. With consistent use, expect to find the perfect balance that will make you focus better, stress less, and relax easier every single day.

 

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CBD for Stress

 

Chronic pain will no doubt make you stressed. CBD may help relieve stress by acting on your pain receptors (CB1R) and altering your pain perception. In doing so, it helps instill a sense of calm. 

CBD's ability to reduce stress is linked to its effect on cortisol levels. It's been shown that CBD doses of between 300 and 600 milligrams reduced cortisol levels. High cortisol levels correspond to a high frequency of nighttime awakenings.

Reducing cortisol levels in the body helps you sleep better and relieves stress. It's been shown that CBD doses of between 300 and 600 milligrams reduced cortisol levels.

Our FOCL Premium CBD Gummies will not only relax you, but keep you focused during the day. One gummy during the day and two at night should help you unwind peacefully in the evenings. Within a month, your body will have started calibrating the effects of CBD. If used consistently, these gummies keep you relaxed throughout your day.

 

 

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We also have FOCL CBD Fruit Chews that come in three fruity flavors. The premium CBD will relax your mind and body, helping to keep you calm, relaxed, and focused. We insist on consistent use to enjoy the full benefits of these tasty chews.

  

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CBD for Trouble Sleeping

In another research study, researchers assessed the impact of CBD treatment on adults with sleep and anxiety problems. The results indicated that high doses of CBD (160 milligrams) might support sleep. 

In another study, scientists gave the participants CBD doses of 25 mg to 175 mg. They established that the 25 mg dose was more effective in reducing anxiety. For sleep problems, higher doses of CBD seemed to work better. 

Our CBD products are 100% plant-based, THC-free, and third-party tested to prove their high-quality standards. FOCL Night promises the full benefits of deep, restful sleep, night after night. We recommend using this product consistently to enjoy full benefits. 

  

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CBD for Pain

CBD is fast gaining a reputation as a potent pharmaceutical agent against pain and inflammations. While our understanding of how CBD reduces pain is still evolving, animal studies show that CBD exerts its anti-pain properties via various pathways in the endocannabinoid, nociceptive (pain-sensing), and inflammatory systems.

The endocannabinoid system comprises a network of cannabinoid receptors that interact with endogenous cannabinoids to influence many body functions, including how to adapt to pain.

In Canada, a 1:1 combination of THC and CBD is approved for treating certain types of pain, specifically cancer pain that does not respond to opioid therapy and central neuropathic pain in patients with multiple sclerosis. 

There is no empirical study supporting CBD monotherapy in pain treatment. Meaning CBD may work better with THC. So, you can see the complexity of this issue.

 

Approved Uses for CBD

 

Thus far, prescription medicine called Epidiolex is the only CBD product that has managed to get the approval of the FDA. The drug is used to treat a stubborn type of seizure (Lennox Gastaut syndrome) that typically does not respond to conventional anticonvulsants. It is also used in treating tuberous sclerosis complex in people aged one year and above. 

 

Bottom Line

 

Pregnancy can be a difficult time, no doubt. While anecdotal evidence overwhelmingly suggests that CBD may solve some of the unpleasant pregnancy-related symptoms bothering you, you may have to hold on for a bit longer. We also understand why you can be tempted to turn to CBD products for relief. 

Medical experts strongly caution against using cannabis during pregnancy, at least for now. If, however, you want to try CBD, we recommend talking to a healthcare professional for guidance. 

Meanwhile, we suggest using the opportunity to inquire about other possible alternatives.

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