NEW YORK, May 15 (UPI) — Marijuana-smoking mothers who breastfeed pass the drug to their babies through the milk, U.S. health experts said.
Mothers pass on everything they consume to babies in their breast milk. However, I have my doubts that marijuana is passed through the breast; I think the stems would kinda hurt. Maybe THC is passed through breast milk…
“There is a higher concentration of marijuana in breast milk than in the mother’s bloodstream so these babies are getting a fair amount of marijuana,” said Sarah Kabalka, a registered nurse who specializes in addiction.
The American Academy of Pediatrics says you shouldn’t smoke pot and breastfeed. Unfortunately there isn’t much in the way of studies of marijuana-only smoking mothers and breastfeeding. A 1990 study claimed that pot-smoking breastfeeding led to decreased motor development, but another study found no differences between pot-breastfed infants and controls. The Sudden Infant Death Research Foundation claims pot-breastfed babies are at higher risk for SIDS.
Marijuana, which is nearly three times stronger than it was two decades ago, also can result in gynecomastia, or enlarged breasts, and lower sperm motility, Dr. David Sack, an addiction psychiatrist at Promises Treatment Centers told the New York Daily News in a story published Friday.
I don’t want anyone named Dr. Sack talking to me about sperm motility! I’m also having trouble understanding what a modest, reversible effect on male sperm motility caused by chronic marijuana use has to do with breastfeeding mothers who smoke pot.
The gynecomastia claim has never been proven and the studies out so far are contradictory. I tend to believe the biggest cause of “man boobs” among pot smokers is lack of exercise and poor diet. And again, gynecomastia is a male consition; what does this have to do with breastfeeding?
Regular users of marijuana, those who smoke it several times a week, also have a higher rate of depression, and marijuana can lead to addiction if the user is genetically predisposed to becoming an addict, Kabalka said.
Or could it be that people with depression tend to smoke marijuana several times a week to self-medicate? And once again, the connection to breastfeeding is what, depressed babies?
When you “start smoking pot, there is no way to know when the switch is flipped and you become an addict,” she said. “Since the pot is stronger, that means you become more high and stay high longer.”
I think Nurse Kabalka failed that class in nursing school where they explained how the kidneys, liver, lungs, and brain work. When you smoke pot, you get high. “High” is acheived by X% of THC in your bloodstream (X differs from person to person). If you have schwag, you’ll smoke a lot of it until you reach X%. If you have kind, you’ll smoke a little of it until you reach X%. But X% of schwag and the X% of kind is the same X%! (It’s like that old saw about “a pound of feathers” vs. “a pound of lead”.) So as the THC hits your lungs and is distributed to your blood which carries it to the greedy little CB1 and CB2 receptors in the brain, you can quickly and easily determine when you’ve hit X%. Then your liver and kidneys work at removing that THC from your blood (the THC-COOH metabolites go to your fat cells, damn it!), which happens at the same rate whether X% is schwag or kind.
I’m not doctor, pediatrician, or biologist, but this is how I personally look at any and all claims regarding marijuana, pregnancy, and infants: Marijuana’s been used by mankind in various societies for thousands of years. If pot smoking during pregnancy and/or breastfeeding were demonstrably harmful, the societies that allowed moms to use pot would’ve stopped it or we’d see noticeable differences between their children and controls by now. But since Jamaicans, Rastafarians, and three generations of Deadheads seem to have kids that are no different than anyone else’s, I’m believe marijuana and motherhood claims are simply more propaganda.
(That said, I don’t think moms should be blazing four-foot bong rips all day, either, and then breastfeeding junior. I think moderate or occasional use shouldn’t be a problem.)