Rehab for Pregnant Mothers & Women Near Me
Substance use disorder (SUD) rates in pregnant women quadruplet from 1999 to 2014. On average, the number of pregnant women with SUD increased from 1.5 per 1000 hospital deliveries in 1999 to 6.5 in 2014.1 However, estimates suggest this number could be as high as 5% of all pregnant women.2
Substance abuse can lead to many problems in pregnant women. The most notable one is neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS), which causes withdrawal syndrome in babies right after they’re born. While a number of research papers focus on heroin effects on newborn babies, other substances can also cause serious problems. This is why effective treatment is so important.2
Unfortunately, finding a drug rehab for pregnant mothers near you can prove to be a challenge, as many treatment centers won’t accept pregnant women that haven’t already detoxed. Fortunately, there are still options to get help for pregnant women and achieving positive outcomes is possible.3
- 19 states offer specialized drug treatment programs for pregnant women.
- 13 states give priority to pregnant women when it comes to state-funded treatment programs.
- 4 states have laws that prohibit discrimination against women who are pregnant and looking to get treatment for SUD.
What Are the Dangers and Risks of Abusing Substances While Pregnant?
Unfortunately, being pregnant and addicted to drugs can lead to many long-term health problems in infants. Unfortunately, many of them can be fatal. Other than NAS, abusing substances while being pregnant can lead to:2
- Birth defects.
- Premature birth.
- Small head circumference.
- Low birth weight.
- Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASDs) are common in mothers that have been heavily drinking during pregnancies. It can lead to consequences such as spontaneous abortion, birth defects, as well as mental retardation. In general, 6 to 9 out of 1000 children have FASDs in the U.S., but there are only 0.2 to 1.5 diagnosed infants for every 1000 live births.5,6
Stillbirth is also much more common in pregnant mothers that abuse drugs than in pregnancies in women who don’t suffer from SUD and the rates are as follows:2
- Tobacco use leads to a 1.8 to 2.8 times higher risk of stillbirth. The heavier the smoking, the greater the risk. Even passive exposure to tobacco leads to a 2.2 greater risk.
- Women who use marijuana are at a 2.3 times higher risk of stillbirth.
- Stimulants and prescription pain relievers lead to 2.2 times greater stillbirth risk.
Withdrawal Symptoms That Can Occur Due to Substance Abuse During Pregnancy
Heroin addiction can cause significant pregnancy problems, but other substances can also result in NAS, especially after regular birth. These include alcohol, benzodiazepines, barbiturates, and even caffeine. The severity and type of withdrawal symptoms in infants will depend on the severity of substance abuse, what substance has been abused and how often, how the body reacted to the drug, as well as whether the baby was born prematurely or after a full term.2
Symptoms of NAS can appear either immediately or up to 14 days after the infant is born. Some of the common symptoms include:2
- Blotchy skin.
- Rapid breathing.
- Slow weight gain.
- Increased heart rate.
- Excessive, high-pitched crying.
Drug Addiction and Breastfeeding
In general, women should avoid using illicit drugs, tobacco, alcohol, and even many prescription drugs not only during pregnancy, but also while breastfeeding.2
For example, while there’s not much evidence about the effects marijuana can have on a breastfeeding baby, it appears that a certain amount of THC can still get into breast milk. This might lead to decreased motor development or even alter the development of the brain. Alcohol, on the other hand, might disrupt the infant’s sleep cycle.2
Some precautions are also necessary when it comes to prescription medications. Many antidepressant and anti-anxiety medications might harm nursing babies, which is why it’s essential that breastfeeding mothers try to stay away from abusing prescription medicine. Some of the potental effects on the baby include:2
- Excessive crying.
- Skin rashes.
- Sleepiness and lethargy.
- Loss of appetite.
What Does Detox for Pregnant Women Include?
Detox is the first step of recovery. It helps you get sober and safely go through withdrawal syndrome. Withdrawal may have a range of symptoms such as:7
- Pelvic pain.
The type of detox will depend on the type of substance you’ve been using, but may typically include some form of medically supervised withdrawal. This is a form of medication-assisted treatment (MAT) that includes the use of medication to ease this process. The exact amount of medication will depend on how much drugs you’ve been taking and for how long.7
However, this might not keep the infant from struggling with NAS right after birth. In some cases, babies exposed to suboxone might experience a shorter withdrawal period when compared to infants from mothers who used other detox medication or no medication at all. Withdrawing from opioids safely while pregnant is essential for the future health of your baby.7
Are There Possible Complications of Detox During Pregnancy?
Medically detoxing while pregnant in a safe and controlled setting is highly recommended, as it’s dangerous to quit cold turkey. However, there are a few considerations to keep in mind:7
- Detoxing may be dangerous for a pregnant woman abusing heroin in the first trimester, as the chances of miscarriage are high.
- Detoxing may not be recommended in the last trimester, either, as it can lead to early labor.
If done properly in a controlled medical environment and with professional supervision, medical detox is generally safe during pregnancy. Additionally, there is no evidence that medications such as buprenorphine and suboxone can cause birth defects.7
What to Expect in Rehab for Pregnant Mothers?
It’s essential that treatment programs for pregnant women are of the highest quality possible, affordable, accessible, and culturally appropriate. Some form of support should also be available to their families and partners.8
The types of treatment offered at most drug rehab centers for pregnant women include:8
- Opioid agonist therapy as a part of heroin treatment programs.
- Family-centered therapy and treatment, including pregnancy education, counseling, and parenting classes.
- Evaluation in case of substance-exposed children.
- Prenatal care adjusted to the specific needs of women who are pregnant and addicted to heroin or other illicit substances.
- Professional screening, evaluation, and assessment in case of existing co-occurring mental health disorders.
- Specialized treatment facilities designed for women in challenging life situations, such as domestic abuse.
- Case management and treatment planning for personal history of FASDs or fetal alcohol syndrome, as well as prenatal drug exposure.
- Contraceptive and reproductive counseling, including education on the effects illicit drugs might have on fetal health.
- Couples’ treatment in which a woman’s partner can be included.
Depending on the severity of SUD, the patient might be advised to go to a facility that will provide 24/7 inpatient care, a caring and professional residential center, or outpatient facility that offers addiction treatment in cases where such care is enough to address their needs.8
Important Tips on Choosing a Drug Treatment Program for Pregnant Women
When choosing a rehab for pregnant mothers, it’s important to consider multiple factors and find a program suitable. These include:9
- A rehab program should prioritize prevention. Preventing and reducing the abuse of substances during pregnancy and after birth is essential for women’s and babies’ wellbeing. Well-developed aftercare treatment with or without medication can help prevent relapse.
- Treatment should provide evidence-based treatment services. It should also ensure that all women get access to healthcare services, no matter their substance abuse.
- The treatment center should respect the patient’s autonomy. Pregnant women should be fully informed about possible dangers of substance abuse, as well as treatment options that are available for them.
- Providing comprehensive care and being treated by a professional, licensed staff is also important.
- The facility should safeguard patients from stigmatization and discrimination. Unfortunately, stigma is something pregnant women dealing with addiction commonly face. A professional rehab center should be strictly against any type of discrimination, and pregnant patients should be treated with equally as any other client.
It’s important to keep in mind that these are only recommended guidelines and not regulations stated by law. Not all facilities that provide treatment for pregnant women legally have to follow them.9
Financing Addiction Treatment for Pregnant Mothers
Unfortunately, one of the main reasons why people with SUD don’t receive the treatment they need is due to the inability to cover the costs. Financing rehab is a challenge on its own, but there are certainly options for getting help.10
Thanks to the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act (MHPAEA), all health insurance carriers are required to provide the same type of benefits for substance use disorders as they would for any hospital or medical emergency. Therefore, your insurance carrier will likely be able to cover at least a portion of the costs of your treatment. This includes both state-funded insurance providers such as Medicaid, as well as private insurers.11
There are other payment options for people who don’t have insurance that covers the costs of addiction treatment. While you can always borrow from friends and families, you might also consider finding a facility that offers sliding scales or installments and loan options. You might even try crowdsourcing to get the money to pay for treatment. Some faith-based and community initiatives might also be able to help.11,12
How Can I Find the Best Rehab for Pregnant Mothers Near Me?
If you’d like to find a facility that offers drug treatment programs for pregnant women, your first step might be to call a substance abuse hotline from your area. They might be able to point you in the direction of the nearest treatment facility. Calling a hotline is also a great way to get help for your loved one. A professional dispatcher might connect you with a medical team that will help you stage a successful intervention or help you better understand SUD.12
Helpline representatives might also help you find a treatment facility that provides detox services or short-term inpatient rehab. Some centers may allow same-day admittance for pregnant women, but it’s always best to check with the specific provider. You can also call your insurance provider, explain your situation, and ask them to help you find a local facility that’s covered under your policy.12
Finally, you might want to get in touch with one of the best and nationally trusted treatment providers such as American Addiction Centers. In addition to providing you with guidance, their team can also verify your insurance to find out if you’re covered for treatment. By calling the AAC’s helpline, you can talk to a navigator who will check your benefits right while you’re on the phone.
AAC might direct you to a rehab facility for pregnant women that can provide you with treatment tailored to your needs. Recovering from addiction while pregnant is a challenging and dangerous task, so it’s important to find a a professional, licensed team that will take your unique situation into consideration. AAC can give you just that.
Frequently Asked Questions