Maggie Frank, a mom who is also the National Educator for PlusCBD Oil, says she's seen the product "used by women during pregnancy to help with a wide range of complaints including morning sickness, stress and anxiety, sleeplessness, food aversions as well as the aches, pains and cramps that accompany pregnancy for many."
These properties are research-proven. Clinical research has shown that CBD, which is generally taken orally as a tincture or in an edible form, can be therapeutically useful for managing anxiety and depression, chronic pain, sleep disorders, and seizure disorders. There's also clinical evidence that CBD can be effective in suppressing nausea and vomiting, both symptoms commonly encountered by expectant moms. So, it's no surprise that some pregnant women are getting on-board with, or simply curious about, CBD use.
Touted for offering a bevy of benefits, from pain relief to stress management, CBD, or cannabidiol, is having a real moment. The component of either a marijuana or hemp plant is non-psychoactive, unlike THC (tetrahydrocannabinol)—which only comes from marijuana—and is popping up in therapeutic products all over the internet and country. From drinking CBD mocktails as an alternative to wine to caring for sore muscles with a CBD salve or soaking in a tub with a CBD-lace bath bomb, moms everywhere are loving its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-psychotic, anti-convulsant, and antidepressant properties.
When Frank herself was expecting in 2015, prior to joining the company, she says she suffered from hypermesis gravitum (HG), a condition marked by chronic, severe morning sickness. "I was getting sick 20-30 times a day, was unable to nourish myself or my baby, and was constantly flirting with dehydration," she tells Parents.com. "The medicine typically prescribed for this has a slew of potential side effects, so I refused it. My symptoms actually got worse with each passing month, to a point where my doctor was recommending bed rest in the fourth month."
Felice Gersh, MD, ob-gyn and founder/director of the Integrative Medical Practice of Irvine in Irvine, California corroborates that experts' concern is related to lacking data and "the fact that production is poorly regulated in most states." While that remains to be the case, she advises her pregnant patients to avoid using CBD.
If you are considering using cannabis, or any products containing THC or CBD, you should be aware of the following:
We also know that there is a potential for CBD products to be contaminated with substances that may pose a risk to the fetus or breastfed baby, including THC. We have also heard reports of CBD potentially containing other contaminants (e.g., pesticides, heavy metals, bacteria, and fungus); we are investigating this.
FDA recently completed an evaluation of some hemp seed-derived food ingredients and had no objections to the use of these ingredients in foods. THC and CBD are found mainly in hemp flowers, leaves, and stems, not in hemp seeds. Hemp seeds can pick up miniscule amounts of THC and CBD from contact with other plant parts, but these amounts are low enough to not raise concerns for any group, including pregnant or breastfeeding mothers.
What about hemp seeds?
FDA has not approved any CBD products except for one prescription drug to treat rare, severe forms of seizure disorders in children. It is still unclear whether CBD has any other benefits.
High doses of CBD in pregnant test animals have caused problems with the reproductive system of developing male fetuses 2 . In addition, based on what we already know about CBD, we expect that some amount of CBD will be transferred to babies through breast milk.
FDA strongly advises against the use of cannabidiol (CBD), tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), and marijuana in any form during pregnancy or while breastfeeding.
FDA wants you to know there may be serious risks to using cannabis products, including those containing CBD, if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
This simply involves applying the dropper directly in the mouth and swallowing the oil. Alternatively, you can mix the oil in with a smoothie or other meal to disguise the naturally bitter flavor.
There are institutions that will pay for research like this, but as of yet, no one has stepped up to take it on for this particular question.
There are well over 67 different cannabinoids in the cannabis plant — only a small handful of which are psychoactive. This includes THC as the primary psychoactive component.
6. Use CBD Products Made from Isolate Only
This condition can be debilitating, making it nearly impossible to leave the house when it’s at its worst. Additionally, frequent vomiting can easily result in dehydration — which is dangerous for both the mother and baby.
In the case of CBD oils, the biggest problem is the contamination of heavy metals, pesticides, and organic solvents. All of these things can be harmful to the health of your baby.
The similarities in the structure of CBD to these hormones allow CBD to interact with the endocannabinoid system — made up of a series of receptors around the human body. This system has many uses but the most important is its role in regulating homeostasis (balance).
Without the research to prove that CBD is indeed safe and effective during various stages of pregnancy — most experts will err on the side of caution and avoid it.