Being addicted to drugs and alcohol before you are pregnant can lead to you still having addiction problems after you are pregnant. It is essential to get help as soon as possible for your health and the health of your baby.
For some women, treatment might be as simple as stopping the use of the substance and going through a program. This is not always the right treatment for each woman though. That is because quitting some drugs can actually be more harmful to the baby due to withdrawal.
This is when medication management and ongoing group therapy might be the best alternative. This is best for women who:
– Are not able to quit drinking or using drugs without help
– Are addicted to the drug they are using especially if they are opiates
– Discovered that they were pregnant late and abused drugs or alcohol during the first trimester
– Have been abusing drugs for a long time
– Need help learning how to remain drug-free after the baby is born
Inpatient/ Residential Treatment
This is when the patient needs to live at a treatment center. This is usually for a minimum of 30 days or so. This is so they can get care 24 hours a day and be monitored, and is safer for the baby. They need supervision and structure to quit the drugs they were using.
They are meant to make you feel comfortable and learn how to live without alcohol or drug use and be healthy for their child.
Outpatient treatment is a good option for people who need to live at home or don’t need as much support through the treatment. It is also good for people who have already had inpatient care.
There are a few different programs in these cases. Partial hospitalization programs involve treatment at a hospital five days a week for 6 hours a day where patients go home after. Intensive outpatient care involves 10 hours of treatment over a few days where the patient comes in.
Standard outpatient is when they come in for treatment for weekly therapy sessions and check in.
Medication management is an option that many pregnant women need. That is because detoxification is not always safe for the unborn child. Withdrawal symptoms can be intense and dangerous and cause harm to the fetus.
If that is the case and the mom is addicted to opiates, it might be better to get on a medication that replaces the bodies need for the dangerous drug. There are still side effects and they aren’t always considered safe, but they are more reliable than the illegal drug the mother was using.
This way they can be weaned off after the baby is born and they are less likely to have as negative an impact as the other illegal drugs.
Whichever treatment is used, pregnant women with addiction need as much support and care as they can get to assist in their ultimate recovery.