Disclaimer: CBD, cannabinoids, and other cannabis products are strongly discouraged during pregnancy. The FDA strongly advises against the use of CBD and any cannabis products during pregnancy and breastfeeding. The following information is not medical advice and is for educational purposes only. We do not condone nor recommend the use of CBD during pregnancy or breastfeeding.
This blog post will provide an overview of CBD and pregnancy – including usage guidelines and recommendations – to help you make informed decisions about using CBD during this critical time. Find out how to use CBD safely during pregnancy, including dosage instructions, benefits of using CBD during pregnancy, what to watch out for while taking CBD during pregnancy, and more.
What is CBD, and is it safe to use during pregnancy?
CBD is short for cannabidiol, one of the many active compounds found in cannabis and hemp plants. Unlike THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), CBD does not have any psychoactive effects. This means that it will not make you feel ‘high’ or ‘stoned.’ However, CBD shows potential in treating various ailments, including anxiety, inflammation, and more.
Anecdotal evidence suggests that the cannabinoid can help alleviate the many woes expectant mothers face daily. For example, it is said to help with morning sickness, nausea, and postpartum depression. CBD can help with sleeplessness and insomnia that are often associated with pregnancy.
But what does science say about CBD and pregnancy? Unfortunately, there remains a lack of comprehensive research in this area. There are also concerns that the cannabinoid can affect the developing fetus or child, whether by consumption by the mother or via breastfeeding during infancy.
The FDA strongly advises against using any cannabis products – including CBD – during pregnancy. The lack of scientific evidence means that we do not know enough about the serious risks and benefits to say whether or not it is safe.
If you consider using CBD oil during pregnancy, it is critical to speak with your doctor first. Never take any products without consulting your physician during pregnancy.
Is CBD for pregnancy legal?
At this point, you might be wondering if CBD is legal. The answer to this question depends on where you live. In the United States, CBD is legal in all 50 states, as long as it contains less than 0.03% THC. However, it is not legal in all countries – so please check the laws in your own country before using CBD oil during pregnancy.
Though hemp-derived CBD is legal throughout the United States, the FDA has not approved it as a drug or medicine. As such, the agency does not regulate its production and sale. This leaves the mother in a difficult position: they want to use CBD to ease their symptoms but don’t know how to ensure that the product they’re using is safe.
Technically speaking, CBD is legal for use in pregnancy. However, negligence that leads to the death of a fetus puts you at risk for potential criminal lawsuits. This is why we advise all expecting mothers to avoid using CBD during pregnancy and during breastfeeding. It’s not worth the risk!
CBD and Pregnancy: Risk factors
Though using CBD during this delicate period offers some potential benefits, it’s not without major risks. The use of any product containing cannabis derivatives is still considered risky. There’s still a lot we do not know about their effects on mothers and developing fetuses.
One potential risk of CBD use during pregnancy is that it could interfere with the development of the fetus’s brain. CBD has been shown to cross the placenta, which could potentially affect the baby’s developing nervous system.
Another potential risk is that CBD could be passed to a nursing infant through breast milk. Some believe that CBD in human milk harms the fetus in the long run. Infant CBD exposure is concerning because we do not yet know how the cannabinoid could affect a child’s development.
Lastly, one study conducted with pregnant test animals showed that CBD affected the reproductive systems of male fetuses. While this does not necessarily mean that CBD is harmful to developing human babies, it is something to be aware of.
CBD oil is generally safe for adults, but there is still limited information about its effects on expectant mothers and developing fetuses. It is essential to speak with your doctor before using CBD oil during pregnancy. They will advise you on the safest way to use CBD and whether or not it is right for you.
Potential side effects
Aside from these risk factors, mothers should also consider the possible side effects of CBD use. These may include the following:
- Dry mouth
- Sleepiness or fatigue
- Nausea and vomiting
- Low blood pressure
- Changes in appetite
Though the side effects of CBD usage are generally mild, they can still be bothersome. If you experience any of these CBD reactions, speak with your doctor about whether or not CBD is the right relief option for you. Your doctor may recommend that you abandon the drug entirely or that you lower your dose to avoid such adverse reactions.
As a drug, CBD may also interact with other prescription medications you might be taking. Be sure to be open about your medical history when consulting your doctor on CBD use.
CBD products for mothers
Outside the period of pregnancy and after breastfeeding, mothers can choose from many CBD selections. Which CBD-infused option suits you best will largely depend on your personal preferences. Here’s a list of CBD products that mothers often use:
- CBD oil
- CBD gummies
- CBD topicals
CBD oil is one of the most preferred and popular ways to consume CBD. Oils can fit seamlessly into your routine.
For example, some mothers might prefer CBD gummies because they are easy to take and come in various flavors. Others might find that using a CBD topical is more effective, especially when dealing with localized pain relief. Check out our CBD skincare products for the best topicals for mothers available right now!
Whatever route you decide to take, make sure to start slowly and increase your dosage gradually as needed. Speak with your healthcare provider if you have any questions about how much CBD is suitable for you.
Other factors to consider before using CBD
Dosage isn’t the only thing you should check before starting CBD. Other factors such as purity, potency, and even brand should be taken into consideration as well. After all, you want to be as safe as possible for you and your developing child during this delicate period.
Type of CBD to use
To keep in mind about CBD products, they are not created equal. Some products contain more terpenes and flavonoids than others, while others contain purely CBD. Before settling with a particular CBD-infused product, do check whether they’re made with full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, or isolate CBD:
- Full-spectrum CBD oil contains all the terpenes and cannabinoids derived from the hemp (or cannabis) plant.
- Broad-spectrum CBD: A broad-spectrum CBD oil contains most of the terpenes and cannabinoids found in hemp – but still to a lesser degree compared to full-spectrum CBD
- CBD isolate: CBD isolate is a product that has 99% CBD and little-to-no THC. On the flip side, you don’t get the full benefits of hemp’s terpenes and cannabinoids.
Related: Broad Spectrum CBD vs Full Spectrum CBD Explained
Purity of the product
As more and more CBD-infused products enter the market, it’s also become increasingly difficult to find a product that lives to the “made with all-natural ingredients” claim.
Be sure to research the brand you’re considering and read customer reviews (or even contact former customers) to understand how trustworthy they are. Check whether the CBD is extracted from hemp using CO² extraction – this is a safe, chemical-free process – or if it’s been solvent-extracted.
If you’re still unsure, it might be a good idea to go with a CBD product that’s been certified by a third-party organization like the US Hemp Authority. So, when looking for a CBD product always make sure that it is:
- Made with organic hemp
- Contains no heavy metals or pesticides
- Free from THC and other potentially psychoactive cannabinoids
- Tested by a third party or laboratory for safety and purity
Brand or product reputation
Even if a product checks all of the boxes above, there’s always a chance that you might end up with a product that does more harm than good.
Only purchase CBD from brands that are well-known and have a good reputation. In addition, make sure only to buy products that have been certified by a third-party organization like the US Hemp Authority.
Luckily, most CBD stores allow customers to leave a rating or product review for their CBD selections. Be sure to check these out before making a purchase, as they can give you an idea of what to expect from the product.
Alternatives to CBD for pregnancy
Some other alternatives include:
- Treating nausea with ginger: There are many different ways to take ginger for nausea, from candied ginger to ginger tea. All forms of ginger are thought to be effective in treating morning sickness.
- Acupuncture: This Traditional Chinese Medicine practice effectively treats morning sickness, labor pain, and other pregnancy-related issues.
- Natal hypnosis: This is a form of suggestive hypnosis that helps mothers connect with their unborn child and prepare for childbirth, thus making labor less stressful and pain-inducing.
- Herbal remedies: Many herbs have been traditionally used to treat pregnancy-related issues, such as chamomile, lavender, and peppermint. Speak with your doctor before using any herbal remedy while pregnant.
When it comes to pregnancy-related nausea and vomiting, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. And always remember to consult with your doctor before taking any medications or supplements, even natural ones.
CBD and Pregnancy – Usage Guide and Recommendations: Final thoughts
Although CBD is generally considered safe, it’s critical to understand the risks for pregnant and breastfeeding women. We strongly advise against the use of CBD for pregnancy.
If you want to learn more about how CBD can help you during pregnancy, be sure to check out our other blog posts on the topic (see: Is CBD Safe for Pregnant Women?).