Using CBD-infused products is a popular trend nowadays. CBD has been dubbed as a remedy for everything from simple pains to anxiety. For many, the legality of marijuana across all states is what has prompted the widespread acceptance of CBD. Regardless of the reason, CBD is now a hot commodity, and people also use it for recreational purposes such as vaping.
Is CBD Safe for Pregnant Women?
Many of those who have tried CBD are convinced that it is totally safe. With less than 0.3% tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBD has negligible amounts of the psychoactive component that causes mind-altering effects.
All this raises the question: is CBD safe to take even if you're pregnant? There are many conflicting opinions and accounts regarding the issue, and it seems we are a bit of a way off from coming to a consensus.
In any case, it may help to know what CBD is and why it works the way it does to determine how safe it is for pregnant women.
What is CBD?
CBD is a substance that is classified as a phytocannabinoid. It is only one of the many chemicals found in cannabis. The CBD you commonly see for sale has undergone extensive processing. These products typically come in the form of oils, tinctures, or food supplements.
Don’t confuse CBD with cannabis oil. While CBD is an ingredient in many different types of products, cannabis oil is a concentrated liquid extracted from Cannabis sativa.
An article published by Harvard Health reveals that CBD is the second most prevalent active ingredient of the cannabis plant. Unlike its primary active ingredient, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBD is not a psychoactive substance. Subsequently, it does not cause users to get “highs” or experience any other psychoactive effects. Even so, CBD has many other positive effects.
CBD may be extracted from two plants in the cannabis family: hemp or marijuana. Marijuana-derived CBD usually contains more trace amounts of THC as compared to hemp-derived CBD. In most jurisdictions, hemp-derived CBD must contain a maximum of 0.3% THC or less.
What CBD does contain is a list of nutrients and minerals, such as potassium, protein, and omega fatty acids. Most of these nutrients are beneficial to the body and are known to improve health. These benefits make many pregnant women eager to try CBD-infused products.
Is CBD Safe for Pregnant Women?
Although CBD is an ingredient in many health and wellness products nowadays, there aren’t enough studies to prove its safety and efficiency for pregnant women. The Food and Drug Administration strongly advises against the use of CBD and THC infused products during pregnancy.
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) also advises pregnant women to avoid using marijuana or related products, even for medical purposes. Studies show that marijuana use during pregnancy could result in children with smaller stature and lower birth weights.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) also warns pregnant women not to use marijuana or any of its derivatives due to the possibility of impaired brain development in children. Using marijuana can result in long-term consequences such as poor cognitive function and hyperactivity.
Some studies suggest that CBD use entails some risk for people in general, despite the absence of THC. Some of the known risks of CBD use include:
- Liver toxicity (damage)
- Extreme sleepiness
- Harmful interactions with other drugs
There is currently no comprehensive research on the effects of CBD on developing fetuses or pregnant women. That being said, the FDA continues to explore the potential of CBD and derivative products to come up with more conclusive findings. Nevertheless, the available information on marijuana and CBD use so far suggests that it would be best for pregnant women to avoid such products.
The best way to ensure safety during pregnancy is to not use or ingest any type of CBD-infused product. Even though there aren’t enough scientific studies on pregnancy and CBD to merit a definitive “no” with regard to how safe these medications are, it is always a good idea to heed doctors’ advice.
There is no hard evidence that CBD will cause child development issues if fetuses are exposed to the substance inside the womb. However, do not interpret a lack of evidence to be evidence of safety. Stay away from CBD-infused products during the duration of your pregnancy and you could avoid possible side effects.