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Drug Abuse Influence on Infant Care

Research on Addiction

Current research on addiction to heroin and cocaine shows how moms abusing these drugs are less attentive to their babies. Sometimes they may even withdraw from infant distress. Moms abusing chemicals don't nurture or feed their babies properly, according to some studies. There are also higher rates of destructive behavior among caregivers who struggle with drug abuse since childbirth often modifies the neural system by changing the link between some neurons.

Although an infant's cry can activate components of neural circuitry that stimulates a healthy mother to respond to her baby by speaking tenderly, holding, or rocking; this may not be the case for a mom struggling with an addiction. Mothers who are dealing with drug abuse may have a different experience. Such stimulus produces neglecting behavior toward the newborn and it tends to frustrate the caregiver.

Some behavioral observations by the Yale Child Study Center show how certain brain regions that demonstrate how the parent experiences stress and reward during infant care can activate. This experience can be affected by previous or current exposure to addictive substances that may have led to drug abuse. This inattention or neglect on the part of the parent can affect the child's ability to cope with adverse situations when he or she reaches adulthood.

Substance abuse during pregnancy

Substance abuse during pregnancy can also affect the unborn baby. For example, alcohol exposure in utero may result in a variety of abnormalities of fetal growth and development. There is no safe amount of alcohol consumption during pregnancy. There might be more chances of spontaneous abortion, postnatal or prenatal growth retardation, central nervous system dysfunction, and facial deformities in the baby such as abnormal smallness of the eye, and thin upper lip.

If you are pregnant and struggling with chemical dependency, there are a variety of options to treat your addiction. In the treatment of multiple addictions, in-depth psychological care is vital. This is because, in most cases, a mental disorder may be the contributing factor. For instance, some individuals who suffer from anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder often self-medicate with drugs or alcohol in order to deal with these disorders. Discover treatment programs, Drug Treatment Centers Chapel Hill will assist you with your search at (919) 928-5400.

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