Is CBD Oil Safe During Pregnancy?
Pregnancy is a beautiful time in a woman’s life, but it can also be a very uncomfortable, stressful and nauseating time in a woman’s life, too.
It usually brings on a slew of symptoms, sometimes even before you see the two lines on a positive pregnancy test. Persistent nausea, backache, food aversions, and lack of sleep are just a few of the symptoms you may face during your pregnancy.
Although there are prescription medications that you can take to help manage some of these symptoms, you may be interested in knowing that there may be a more natural remedy available as well - CBD. Cannabidiol (CBD) has been shown to reduce nausea, alleviate pain, and ease anxiety.
However, it is very important to note that no clinical tests have been done on pregnant women and CBD, so more research must be conducted before anyone can conclusively say that CBD is a safe and effective option during pregnancy. If you’re interested in seeing if CBD oil can help you to be more comfortable during pregnancy, you should speak to your doctor first.
To learn more about the many potential perks of CBD oil during pregnancy, check out the information below!
Alleviate Morning Sickness
The nausea you feel during pregnancy, especially during the first trimester, can be debilitating. Although it’s commonly referred to as “morning sickness,” nausea can strike at any time, day or night. It can also hang around all day and provide you with no relief.
Although the exact cause of pregnancy nausea is not completely understood, doctors and scientists believe that it may be caused by a variety of different things. The hormonal changes that you experience during pregnancy, such as the increase in progesterone and estrogen, are thought to play a big part. Also, fluctuating blood sugar levels may be responsible.
One option for fighting nausea that you may want to consider is CBD oil.
There's a trove of research on CBD’s anti-nausea effects. CBD oil has been used by cancer patients dealing with overwhelming nausea and lack of appetite associated with chemotherapy treatments.
One research study found that adults suffering from nausea and vomiting induced by chemotherapy responded well to CBD. In the study, most of the patients found a lot of relief in taking oral cannabidiol. The chemotherapy study stated that CBD is “especially useful in treating the more difficult to control symptoms of nausea and anticipatory nausea in chemotherapy patients.” Many animal experiments have also been conducted that have found that CBD can be very helpful.
If you are dealing with the rough side effects of morning sickness, CBD oil may be able to help.
Another unfortunate symptom of pregnancy is food aversions. When you’re sick, sometimes even just the thought of nourishment can cause you to gag or even vomit. The food aversions that women experience may lead to an overall decrease in appetite. And if the appetite loss continues too long it can lead to nutritional deficits and dehydration, affecting the fetus.
It is very important to get your nausea under control so that you can function throughout the day and get the nutrition you and your growing baby need. But that's easier said than done.
Luckily, research has shown that CBD may cause an increase in appetite as well. A 2016 study on cannabis and cancer treatments found that cannabis is the “only antiemetic that also increases appetite.” Note: an antiemetic is a drug that treats both nausea and vomiting.
Taking CBD may help you to regain your appetite by decreasing your nausea. This can help you to eat a well-balanced diet – vital during pregnancy.
Reduce Aches and Pains
Pain relief and CBD often go hand in hand. Many studies, including this one published by the Journal of Experimental Medicine, have concluded that it may be an effective all-natural pain relief option. CBD has been shown to reduce inflammation in the body, which is one of the biggest causes of pain and discomfort. It also helps to reduce muscle and joint pain, both of which are commonly experienced by pregnant women.
Aches and pains are notorious during pregnancy, especially the third trimester when you're carrying so much extra weight in your belly and you are putting more strain on your muscles and ligaments. Taking some CBD oil by mouth or rubbing the oil directly on your sore body may provide some relief.
Another benefit that CBD is notorious for is anxiety-relief. The compound works with your body’s natural endocannabinoid system to naturally help your body process serotonin, the hormone responsible for helping your mind feel relaxed and calm. It's sometimes referred to as the “happy chemical.”
One study found that CBD enhanced the actions of the brain’s serotonin receptors, which improved signaling. The research found that, because CBD helps with the serotonin signals in the brain, it ultimately boosts moods and reduces anxiety.
Many pregnant women experience anxiety, whether it’s chronic anxiety that lasts throughout the pregnancy or a few anxious days here and there. Regardless of its duration, anxiety can be very difficult to deal with.
Also, some prescription anxiety medications are not recommended during pregnancy, so CBD may be a good alternative. However, as mentioned before, speak to your health care provider about any anxiety treatments, including CBD oil, before you try them during your pregnancy. He or she may advise you to continue taking your current anxiety prescription, or they may suggest other options, possibly including CBD.
If CBD is an option that your doctor recommends, you may find that it provides you with anxiety relief very quickly after taking it. Oftentimes, people feel less stressed and more content within 30 minutes of taking CBD oil orally.
Redouble Quality of Sleep
Sleeplessness or full-on insomnia is also common during pregnancy. This is often due to the surge of hormones in your body, the aches and pains you have, and even anxiety. Also, the fact that many pregnant women need to get up to pee a few times in the middle of the night can make getting a solid 8 hours of shut-eye impossible.
Sometimes sleeplessness is caused by anxious thoughts that plague your mind as soon as your head hits the pillow. Because CBD helps to ease anxiety by increasing your body’s ability to process serotonin, it can also help you to fall asleep faster by reducing some of that anxiety.
There have been quite a few studies on CBD’s effect on sleep. One clinical study published in 2019 questioned whether CBD could help to both reduce anxiety levels and improve sleep. After only one month, 79% of the patients involved in the study reported decreased anxiety levels, and 67% reported improved sleep.
Many scientists are interested in what causes CBD to be so effective for sleep. It’s believed that there are a few different factors that cause CBD to help people fall asleep and stay asleep longer. These factors include CBD’s ability to reduce both pain and anxiety, and CBD’s influence on serotonin receptors and GABA (Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid) receptors in the brain. In case you didn’t know, GABA is a neurotransmitter that helps to calm any excessive activity going on in the brain - ultimately promoting relaxation.
Also, as mentioned earlier, pain during pregnancy is another factor that causes many women to have sleeping problems. When suffering from constant aches and pains, it can be very difficult to fall asleep and stay asleep. Because many research studies have found that CBD is effective in soothing pain, it may also be effective in promoting better sleep.
Is CBD Safe for Pregnant Women?
As mentioned earlier, as of yet no clinical testing has been done on pregnant women and CBD, so no one can conclusively state that CBD is safe to be taken during pregnancy. Some health care professionals, however, recommend CBD oil to their pregnant patients because of the research that has been done on CBD and its minimal side effects.
Ultimately, if you're interested in trying out CBD oil during your pregnancy, speak to your doctor or health care provider. Also, to ensure there's no THC, only use pure CBD oil sold by reputable CBD purveyors.
Jessica has been a freelance writer for four years, with a passion for science and health-related topics. She is also a lover of doing research and genuinely enjoys reading clinical studies, especially if it has anything to do with the emerging research on the health benefits of CBD. Jessica has a degree in behavioral science. She is a travel addict and an avid League of Legends player. She is also a proud dog mom to a Husky and an Australian Shepherd, so she’s frequently covered in dog fur and utterly exhausted from their constant shenanigans.