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September 27, 2022 4 min read
The Food and Drug Administration strictly warns against consuming CBD products by pregnant women. CBD can affect the fetus's development. This article highlights whether CBD products are age-restricted, whether it is legal to take CBD while pregnant, the risk factors of using CBD during pregnancy, and the side effects of CBD.
Cannabidiol commonly referred to as CBD, is quickly gaining traction in the health and wellness industry. It is among the over one hundred and thirty chemical compounds (cannabinoids) naturally existing in the cannabis plant. However, it does not produce the high effect associated with marijuana, like THC, another famous cannabinoid. Some of its most popular benefits include; pain alleviation, reducing nausea, and decreasing anxiety symptoms which are some of the most common side effects of pregnancy. Notably, research on CBD's effects on children and fetuses is still anecdotal; CBD may impact cognitive development, making it a potential risk for pregnant women and children.
CBD products are not FDA regulated. However, they are legal in the federal state thanks to the 2108 Farm Bill. Federally, there are no age restrictions set for CBD purchases. However, state laws on CBD vary. States that have legalized CBD products have strict regulations on users' age; in some states, one has to be eighteen years or older, or twenty-one years in other states. Additionally, CBD retailers must ask for your age when purchasing online.
CBD oil consumption for children is highly prohibited. Notably, a type of CBD, like full-spectrum, contains THC traces. While isolated CBD lacks THC, it may have health effects on children's development. It is worth noting that FDA has only approved specific cannabis-related medications for intractable epilepsy. Studies on CBD remain inconclusive in children. So, avoiding CBD for children without a proper prescription is vital.
Eskander et al. (2020) suggested that anecdotal evidence shows that CBD may help alleviate various pregnancy-related issues. For instance, it may help with nausea, morning sickness, postpartum anxiety, and depression. It may also aid with insomnia which is commonly associated with pregnancy. Unfortunately, there is a lack of comprehensive scientific evidence that supports or refutes these claims. Furthermore, there are concerns that CBD may affect a developing fetus. Hence, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommends CBD for pregnant women. Therefore, consult a doctor before using CBD while pregnant.
Whether CBD is legal or not ultimately depends on where you reside. In the U.S., CBD products are legal in most states only if their THC levels are less than 0.3 percent.
The FDA does not regulate CBD production or sale. While it is legal for expectant mothers, negligence may attract serious legal consequences. Hence, it is recommended that expectant mothers should avoid using any CBD product.
Even though CBD may offer potential benefits during the delicate periods of pregnancy, it may come with significant risks. As aforementioned, much is not known about the effects of cannabis on pregnant women and fetuses. Similarly, little is known about the effects of CBD on breastfeeding mothers. While lack of proper knowledge does not imply that the cannabis derivative is harmful, the unknown impact may become negative.
Sarrafpour et al. (2020) noted that CBD might disrupt the fetus's brain development. According to the study, CBD crosses the placenta, which may affect the fetus's nervous system. Similarly, Knopf &Alison (2020) stated that CBD's effects might be passed to an infant through breastfeeding. The cannabis derivative in milk may cause adverse effects on the fetus in the long term. In turn, it may affect the child's growth and development.
If your doctor has given you the green light to use CBD, you should know that it may cause mild side effects. According to Capano et al. (2020), CBD's side effects include:
If you consistently experience any CBD adverse reactions, you should seek immediate medical help. Your doctor will help you determine whether the product is safe for you or not. Also, CBD may interact with various medications. So, open up to your doctor about your medical history before taking it.
CBD products are not yet FDA approved; the FDA does not regulate their production or sale. After the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill, CBD became federally legal. However, some states have banned its use. Regarding age, some states only allow individuals older than eighteen; for some, you should have surpassed twenty-one years to purchase it. Only CBD isolate is permitted for kids since it contains no psychoactive effects. The FDA advises against CBD for pregnant mothers since it may affect the fetus. Before taking CBD, it is advisable to consult your doctor, especially if you are under any other medications; CBD has the possibility of interacting with various drugs.
Capano, A., Weaver, R., &Burkman, E. (2020). Evaluation of the effects of CBD hemp extract on opioid use and quality of life indicators in chronic pain patients: a prospective cohort study. Postgraduate medicine, 132(1), 56-61.
Sarrafpour, S., Urits, I., Powell, J., Nguyen, D., Callan, J., Orhurhu, V., ...&Yazdi, C. (2020). Considerations and implications of cannabidiol use during pregnancy. Current pain and headache reports, 24(7), 1-10.
Knopf, A. (2020). FDA on CBD in pregnancy and breastfeeding. The Brown University Child and Adolescent Behavior Letter, 36(4), 9-10.
Eskander, J. P., Spall, J., Spall, A., Shah, R. V., & Kaye, A. D. (2020). Cannabidiol (CBD) as a treatment of acute and chronic back pain: A case series and literature review. J Opioid Manag, 16(3), 215-8.
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