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New Treatment Options Explored for Prenatal Drug Abuse Treatment

When a woman is pregnant and living with an active drug addiction, the first priority is to help her to get her addiction issues under control in a way that preserves the unborn child’s health as much as possible. In a situation where a pregnancy does not exist, the woman’s addiction takes priority. Usually, immediate detox is recommended and the withdrawal symptoms that result are treated as they occur. If a woman is pregnant and this method is attempted, in most cases, she will have a miscarriage, thus, pregnant women are often given maintenance medications or slowly weaned off of their drug of choice in a very controlled manner in order to mitigate further damage to their own health and that of their baby.

Some people believe, however, that this slow weaning method can be improved upon, increasing the quality of new life for the child as well as the pregnancy of the mother. Are there better options for treatment available?

JAMA Study

In a recent study published in Journal of Addiction Medicine, some different options for pregnant women that would allow them to address their addiction issues safely were explored – specifically, the use of diluted oral morphine solution instead of opiate-based medications used to treat opiate addiction. It was found that this solution, when administered in a clinical setting and firmly monitored, was not only an effective choice for the treatment of opiate addiction in pregnant women but potentially safer.

The Right Choice for You

As is always the case when there is no known cure for a disorder and multiple options for treatment, the method chosen should be based on the patient’s needs, goals, and experience. It can take quite a bit of conversation and weighing of options for a patient to choose what is best for her needs.

The ideal scenario for the treatment of an opiate addiction in a pregnant woman is a stay in a residential treatment program. Even if she cannot stay for the duration of her pregnancy, the time she spends with 24-hour care and treatment can not only help to prepare her for a life of abstinence when the baby is born but also offer:

  • Medical care as they stabilize in detox
  • Ongoing medical support in the event of an emergency with the pregnancy or detox medication
  • Psychological support as they go through the process of pregnancy, addiction treatment, and building a new life for two people in sobriety
  • Parenting classes to aid in arranging life’s priorities around a child
  • Education in how to help a child who is born drug-dependent

At Orchid Recovery Center, we offer an intensive drug treatment program to all women in need of addiction treatment, no matter their pregnancy-status. Contact us today for more information.

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