Overcoming a drug addiction can be hard for someone to do. If you are struggling from a drug addiction and have recently found out that you are pregnant, you need to do whatever it takes to get off of the drugs right away. Pregnancy in addicts is not uncommon, as unsafe habits related to drug use can result in unsafe practices such as unprotected sex and the neglection of contraceptives.
Unfortunately, your addiction doesn’t care that you’re pregnant. An addiction wants to be fed, and whether or not you have a new, innocent life growing inside of you isn’t going to put a halt to it on its own. Drugs and alcohol are not good for adults, much less a small, developing baby. Seeking treatment in these situations is of dire necessity, because if pregnant addicts continue to engage in use, they are damaging much more than just their own health.
There is nothing to be ashamed about in being pregnant and addicted. Addiction is not a choice, and becoming pregnant might not have been your choice either. But you are choosing to pursue motherhood, and in doing so you must seek treatment for your addiction.
The following guide walks you through a few things you need to keep in mind to be able to overcome your addiction and create a better life for yourself and your unborn child.
Drugs Can Hurt Both You and the Baby
Many people don’t realize how big of an impact drug use can have on a baby. Drugs can not only cause you to have a miscarriage, but they can also lead to premature births and cause major damage to your baby that could cause them to have a much harder life than they deserve to have. This damage includes birth defects, mental deficiencies, developmental delays, and more.
Doing drugs while you are pregnant can cause mental and physical issues for the baby. Some babies that were victims to drugs and alcohol while in the womb can be born with birth defects that are not curable. Harder drugs such as cocaine can cause a fetus to become dependent, and the baby can be born with withdrawal symptoms, shakes, tremors, and muscle spasms. Heroin can cause convulsions, difficulty sleeping, irritability, and joint stiffness in babies born to mothers who abused during pregnancy. Moms who injected the drug are also susceptible to HIV, which can be passed to a baby while in the womb.
Get Help to Stop Using Drugs
Attempting to overcome your drug addiction on your own can be dangerous and difficult to do. You need to go to a rehab facility so that you can get the help that you need in a safe environment. The doctors at the rehab facility can give you medications to lessen the withdrawal symptoms that you experience and monitor your health to ensure that you are as happy and healthy as possible through the detox period.
Treating addiction is already a complicated process, and when a patient is pregnant this becomes even trickier. The smartest thing to do is consult with a rehab and/or medical professional who can direct you toward the best course of action and treatment for your particular situation. The last thing you want to do is self-treat and put more harm or strain on your unborn child.
Rehab Isn’t as Scary as You May Think
When you go to rehab, you will be around other people who are in the same situation as you are. You’ll go through counseling so that you can break the mental and psychological addiction that you have to the drugs. There are medical staff on site at all hours of the day and you are thoroughly monitored to ensure that you and your baby are as healthy as possible throughout the entire process. You can talk to them about any concerns you have and address any issues quickly and thoroughly.
Feelings of selfishness, guilt, embarrassment, and shame are common among addicts who are also pregnant. It can be easy for others to point fingers and be completely insensitive to the fact that addiction is a disease, and not a choice you are making to intentionally harm yourself or your baby. Rehab provides a safe, trusting environment in which you can voice any insecurities and talk with others who are going through or have already gone through a similar situation. Rehab provides excellent support, on both individual and group levels.
Staying Clean Will Take Effort on Your Part
When you leave the rehab facility, it’s important to know that staying clean may be challenging at times. You will need to avoid people who do drugs and stay away from situations where drugs may be around you, even if that person is the baby’s father. Cutting these ties can be extremely difficult and painful, but you must prioritize your own needs, as well as the life and future of your child.
You also need to go to meetings with other recovering addicts to make sure that you have the support you need to stay on track and avoid a relapse. Being able to talk about what you are going through with people who have experienced the same things that you are experiencing will make the process much easier. You are not alone, and sometimes being physically reminded of that can help with breakthrough.
Once your baby arrives, you will quickly realize how worthwhile the effort you put in to get clean was. You will be able to see that your baby is healthy and happy. If you have a baby that is born addicted to drugs, there is a chance that you could lose them in the legal system because the authorities will be fearful that you will put drugs ahead of your baby. Getting clean and having a baby born without drugs in their system betters your chances of being able to keep them and provide them with the life that they deserve.
At Arizona Addiction Recovery Center, we provide a wide range of treatments for all types of addictions. Our priority lies in guaranteeing the long-term sobriety of our patients as best we can, and our programs have highly proven success rates. If you are pregnant and suffering from addiction, call us today and place yourself in the hands of people who truly care for your well-being. Take the first step and reach out today.
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Talk to Someone Who’s Been There. Talk to Someone Who Can Help. Arizona Addiction Recovery Center holds the highest accreditation (Joint Commission) and is Arizona’s premier rehab facility since 2007. Call 888.512.1705.