Pregnancy is a beautiful thing. The joys of an expecting mother are hard to rival. But along with a protruding stomach, pregnancy comes with a not-so-pleasant side. Sadly, some of the corresponding discomforts can take a significant toll on the pregnant woman’s quality of life.
It is not uncommon to find pregnant women struggling with physical discomforts like back pain and migraines, and even psychiatric conditions like depression, anxiety, stress, and insomnia. Would you be shocked to learn the Word Health Organization estimates that one in every ten pregnant women globally suffers a mental disorder?
Not the best of news, for sure, but there is some good news. Studies show the efficacy of CBD in treating the discomforts that these women face. CBD has shown promise in relieving stress and combating anxiety-related disorders like depression.
Specifically, an insightful study documented in the Journal of Psychopharmacology discovered that CBD could reduce subjective anxiety by an impressive margin. What’s more, further studies point to the viability of topical CBD in treating pain and inflammation.
Such pain and inflammation are regular (but unwanted) companions of most pregnant women due to estrogen and progesterone fluctuations. It is, therefore, unsurprising that CBD sales are shooting up. In fact, 14% of Americans admit to using CBD products.
With CBD gaining more legality across the United States and the globe at large, more and more pregnant women are resorting to CBD for relief. The fact that CBD has been proven to contain only negligible amounts of the THC found in marijuana has made CBD even more attractive.
CBD is commonly taken by women in the form of CBD oil and tinctures. These are predominantly consumed for medical and recreational purposes. Interestingly, 59% of hemp-derived CBD users are women.
Indeed, a sizable fraction of these female users is pregnant women. This begs the question: what conditions do pregnant women take CBD products to alleviate?
Reasons why pregnant women use CBD
CBD and pregnancy is quite a controversial combination. But here are the predominant conditions for which expecting mothers use CBD – especially in the form of CBD oil during pregnancy.
Pregnant women use CBD oil to combat hyperemesis gravidarum (HG).
Pregnant women experience nausea, which is usually associated with morning sickness. But unlike morning sickness that tends to fade off within the first 12-14 weeks of the pregnancy, HG persists.
HG is an extreme and persistent kind of morning sickness, characterized by excessive vomiting, fatigue, and general dehydration. HG commonly starts within the first 6 weeks of pregnancy, but it can last up until the final weeks of the pregnancy.
In some cases, HG is accompanied by a significant decline in appetite, dizziness, and weight loss (with extreme nausea and vomiting forcing the pregnant woman to lose up to 10 lbs or about 10% of their body weight).
The risk of HG is amplified in first-time mothers, in people with a history of HG in their family, or in women pregnant with more than one child.
Commonly, ob-gyns and doctors prescribe anti-nausea drugs like meclizine, promethazine, and prochlorperazine. Sadly, most of these medications are accompanied by significant side effects like sleeplessness, anxiety, light-headedness, and blurred vision.
Given this barrage of discomfiting side effects, expecting mothers are now resorting to using CBD oil to relieve themselves of this incessant vomiting and nausea. CBD oil is famous for its ability to improve nausea and vomiting – with no significant side effects.
A study reveals the potency of CBD in improving nauseous conditions by interacting with serotonin receptors in the brain. These receptors play a dominant role in regulating the mood, behavior, and overall well-being of a pregnant woman.
Pregnant women use CBD oil for depression and anxiety.
Depression is relatively common in women. At least one in eight women will face depression at one stage in their lives, while 10% of pregnant women experience depressive symptoms.
Such mental malfunctions in pregnant women are not unrelated to the raging hormones and the inherent sharp deviation from their normal, pre-pregnancy lives, which can cause insomnia and stress.
CBD oil is fast proving to be a potent depression natural remedy. In a study carried out on patients experiencing a social anxiety disorder, the participants either received 400mg of CBD or a placebo. Ultimately, the researchers reported significantly reduced levels of anxiety in the patients that received the CBD dosage.
All this reinforces CBD’s potency in treating mood disorders and other anxiety- and stress-related conditions in pregnant women.
Pregnant women take CBD to relieve pain and discomfort.
It is hard to find a pregnancy without pain. From tender breasts and achy backs to stomach upsets and heartburn, pregnancy is notorious for the levels of discomfort it wreaks on the mother.
Most of these pains are associated with sharp weight gains (as most women put on an extra 25-35 pounds when pregnant), hormonal variations, muscle separation, and even posture changes (as pregnancy often shifts a woman’s center of gravity).
CBD is proving useful in relieving such pains. Research from the National Centers for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) shows that CBD is a promising treatment for chronic pain.
On top of that, this study shows that CBD suppresses the brain’s pain center, thanks to its analgesic properties, which are particularly helping in improving neuropathic pain.
Another recent report further establishes the applicability of CBD in reducing inflammation and overall pain. Therefore, it is unsurprising that pregnant women turn to CBD for relief from the pain and discomfort naturally associated with pregnancy.
Pregnant women take CBD to improve insomnia.
It is no surprise that pregnant women commonly experience sleep deprivation. While their sleeping frequency tends to increase – especially during the first trimesters – such pregnant women often suffer worrisome declines in sleep quality. This is often typified by stretches of daytime exhaustion and sleeplessness at nighttime.
CBD oil and pregnancy is an exciting combo as CBD has been found effective in treating disorders related to insomnia, like REM sleep behavior disorder (RBD). Also, by relieving anxiety, CBD can greatly improve sleep quality.
In 2009, a study on CBD’s effect on sleep quality was carried out on 72 participants, 25 of whom were experiencing poor sleep quality. 25mg of CBD was administered in capsule form to them daily. After 4 weeks, 66.7% of the participants saw notable improvements in their sleep quality.
How safe is CBD during pregnancy?
Having reasonably established CBD’s restorative capabilities for pregnant women, the bigger question comes in: is it safe to use CBD as a pregnant woman?
Admittedly this CBD and pregnancy debate, especially on the issue of safety, has been raging on for quite a while now.
Sorry to disappoint you, but there is no definitive answer on the safety of CBD during pregnancy. This uncertainty is largely attributed to the relative lack of scientific research on CBD’s effect on the fetus when used by a pregnant woman.
Research indicates the possibility of most cannabinoids penetrating the placenta. What is unknown as of now is the impact it would have on it once it reaches the fetus.
The scientific community is divided on this debate. On the one hand, marijuana use is strongly discouraged by the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecologists (ACOG) due to its significant THC composition, which can negatively impact the fetus, unfortunately culminating in low birth weight or even stillborn birth.
But CBD, on the other hand, has only negligible THC content. With that in mind, some notable scientific authorities in the cannabis industry argue in favor of using CBD during pregnancy. For instance, Dr. Stuart Titus, Ph.D., a leading researcher in Medical Marijuana, INC., and holder of a Fellowship with the American Academy of Pain Management, advocates using CBD when pregnant.
According to Dr. Stuart, “research has shown that CBD is a molecule that helps with neurogenesis, the development of healthy brain cells. Many of us are cannabinoid deficient. The more cannabinoids a mom has, the better off her kids are.”
Given the relative uncertainty on the compatibility of CBD and pregnancy, if you must use CBD while pregnant, it is advisable to start off with a lower dosage. This will allow you to gauge your tolerance better, and you can possibly increase your dosage until you get to the recommended dose.
When using CBD, you must observe yourself closely to accurately monitor each dose’s effect. Note the difference in how you feel before and after the CBD treatment.
This awareness is vital so that you can promptly report any notable changes (especially when negative) to your doctor.
We can’t say it enough: if you must use CBD oil, invest in the highest quality products. Unfortunately, there are a plethora of poorly formulated CBD oils strewn across the market today.
There is no denying that such low-grade CBD oil could negatively impact the fetus. Buy only CBD oil products that have been tested by an independent third-party laboratory.
Are you looking for the best quality natural remedies, such as CBD, to help you cope with your pregnancy discomfort? Visit our CBD shop to procure the safest and most effective product to help make your pregnancy a stress-free experience.