Table of Contents
1. Introduction 4
1.1. Statement of problem 4
1.2. Significance to the society 4
2. Relevance to the study 5
2.1. Hypothesis 5
2.2. Research questions 6
3. Research method 6
3.1. Data Sampling and Participants 6
3.2. Data Evaluation and Analysis 7
4. Findings 7
5. Sensitivity to ethical issues 9
6. Strengths and limitations 9
7. Conclusion 10
8. References 11
There has been an increase in the number of infant deaths and other disorders among the new born babies. There are a lot of complications observed in the mothers during the pregnancy and during the time of giving birth. The major reason of such issues is consumption of drugs as well as other substances like caffeine, alcohol and nicotine by the mother before delivery, that is, during their pregnancy.
The purpose of the research paper is to identify the influence of the consumption of legal as well as illegal drugs by the expecting moms during their pregnancy. The data has been collected through interactive interviews, using a questionnaire. The reasons for the illnesses among the mother and the new born child are obtained and a further empirical data can be analyzed for future implications.
Pregnancy is a condition where the immunity of the women becomes weak and she requires special care to be taken of, where she has to take proper, balanced and healthy diet. She not only has to take care about using illegal drugs, but also at the same time, has to take care while taking many legal and prescribed drugs as well. This is beacause the foetus in the womb of a woman is very critical and it is very prone to any kind of infections or abnormalities depending on the consumption of food and other substances by the expecting woman (Casper, Fleisher, & Lee-Ancajas, 2003).
During pregnancy, the use of drugs is not only limited to the consumption of drugs like marijuana and cocaine, but it also involves consumption of alcohol and caffeine in excess (Streissguth, Barr, Martin, & Herman, 1980). The research including such women who used drugs during the time of their pregnancy has been carried out and provided in the resarch. It has been evaluated and analyzed for developing useful remedies and solutions to this problem (Sannerstedt, Lundborg, Danielsson, & Kihlstrom, 1996).
Statement of problem
The harmful effects of consuming drugs by the expecting moms during their pregnancy. This serves to be the problem which has been evaluated in the research.
Significance to the society
The health of the babies at the time of their birth and for some time after that is a matter of great concern for the doctors and scientists. This is due to the reason that irrespective of the improvement and upgradation of technology and science, there is a huge number of deaths among the infants. It has been found that on an average about 50% of the women took legal or illegal drugs during their pregnancy. The immmunity of the child is adversely affected by this. It is observed that about 2 – 3 % of the total defects found in the child during their birth were due to the consumption of specific drugs to cure their illness or treat any disorders faced by the expecting mother (Gunatilake & Patil, 2015).
The use of drugs also worsens the condition of the expecting mom and she has to go through unnecessary complications while giving birth to their child. There may be many diseases or disabilities developed in the baby in the later stages. It is observed that the number of cases of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) has increased tremendously (Kesmodel, Wisborg, & Olsen, 2002).
Relevance to the study
It has been observed that the consumption of prescribed drugs, knowingly or unknowingly, has serious health issues in the child even before their birth in the foetus of the mother. Many times, the disabilities and other disorders related with the mental condition of the child and its capacity to resist virus have been incorporated through the use of drugs by the expecting mom during pregnancy (Casper, Fleisher, & Lee-Ancajas, 2003). There are many cases which are relevant to the study carried on the statement problem. This relevance has been obtained through researches carried among the women who consumed drugs during their pregnancy. There were different effects on the health and condition of the children who were born from such mothers (Gunatilake & Patil, 2015).
The effect of consumption of drugs is different depending on the level of consumption. This has to be obtained in the research. Also, the influence of prescribed drugs, alcohol and caffeine on the health of the child and mother after delivery has to be obtained.
The research would be evaluating and analyzing the same in a predefined and statistical manner.
1. Does consumption of illegal drugs like marijuana and cocaine by the expecting moms during their pregnancy affect the baby?
2. Which are the legal drugs which should be avoided during pregnancy by a woman? Why should they be avoided?
3. What is the level of prescribed drugs that can be taken during pregnancy?
4. What are the disorders which are most commonly sen in the child whose mother had consumed drugs during their pregnancy.
Quantitative research has been carried out which will help in obtaining the data regarding the effects of the drugs consumed by the expecting moms during their pregnancy. Quantitative research would help in obtaining the logistics of the data. There has been a questionnaire which has been developed on the basis of the effects on the child as well as mother.
Data Sampling and Participants
The research that has been carried out involves considering the cases of women where they used to consume legal and illegal drugs before pregnancy. It has been done by taking interactive interviews of the women who consumed such drugs in their teens as well as during their pregnancy. The women who were interviewed were in the age between 20 – 30 years. The sampling was random, that is, all the women were from different fincancial, social and cultural backgrounds. The only things that they had in common was that they had consumed drugs during their pregnancy in different quantities. It may even include usage of alcohol and excessive consumption of caffeine and nicotine.
The participants were asked responsive questions on the basis of a questionnaire that was prepared in advance considering most of the factors related to the consumption of legal as well as illegal drugs.
Data Evaluation and Analysis
The level of consumption of drugs has been evaluated among the women. The effects of the drug consumption was then tabulated on the basis of the level of consumption and the effects on the mother as well as the baby born to them.
The evaluation of the data was carried on the basis of likert scale where the intensity of the effects as well as the level of consumption were developed on a scale which ranked between 1 – 5. In the scale, 5 ratings shows extreme agreement and 1 rating shows extreme disagreement and 3 shows undefinite response.
In the table, the average of the responses got from the mothers are shown. Here, 5 ratings show that the effect was extreme and the condition was worst. The level of intensity decreases from 5 to 1.
It was found that when the consumption of drug was very low during the pregnancy, there were mild effects on the health of the child and the condition of the mother during the delivery was average. However, the condition worsened with the increase in consumption of drugs, where the babies were observed to have various mental and physical illnesses. There was Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) observed in most of the cases where the expecting mom consumed heavy drugs. The condition of the child whose mother had regularly being consuming alcohol and caffeine was somewhat improper. The child experienced excessive frustration, prolonged illness and weak immunity.
The findings of the data collected is shown in the table below:
Consumption details Drug consumption Very low
(during pregnancy) Drug consumption Medium
(during pregnancy) Drug consumption Very high
(during pregnancy) Alcohol and caffeine
Problems during the delivery of the child 3.5 4 5 3
Health of the mother after delivery 4 4.5 5 3.5
Condition of the child 4 5 5 3
Disorder in the child 3.5 4.5 5 3.5
Nature of the child 4 4 4.5 3.5
Sensitivity to ethical issues
The topic is very sensitive as it is related to the health of the new born babies and also on the health of the mother. Developing of disorders and issues of mental and physical illnesses would lead to huge requirement of the medical facilities. This would consumer a large portion of the government’s revenue (Gunatilake & Patil, 2015). Also, it would promote unhealthy environment in the country. Hence, it is a matter of great concern to tackle the ethical issues created by the use of drugs consisting of legal as well as illegal drugs and also including the consumption of caffeine and alcohol (Gunatilake & Patil, 2015).
Strengths and limitations
The research has been supported with empirical data which strongly supports the findings. Any futher research carried on this topic can use the findings of this research as a base for extensive research in the future.
The women were randomly collected and were asked before the research regarding the consumption of drugs during their pregnancy. On the basis of that only, the women were selected for the interview.
However, there are few limitations of the research. It is not involve women from across different countries. This has to be achieved as the behavior and strength of the women are different as per their origin. The data was not able to accurately name the disorders faced by the children. it only provided the presence of any disorders or illnesses among the children.
It cn be stated that the women who were consuming drugs during their pregnancy had large number of adverse effects on the child which was born. The intensity of these effects depended on the level of consumption of the harmful substances by them.
Casper, R. C., Fleisher, B. E., & Lee-Ancajas, J. C. (2003). Follow-up of children of depressed mothers exposed or not exposed to antidepressant drugs during pregnancy. . The Journal of pediatrics, , 142(4.
Gunatilake, R., & Patil, A. S. (2015). Drug Use During Pregnancy. Retrieved from http://www.msdmanuals.com: http://www.msdmanuals.com/home/women-s-health-issues/drug-use-during-pregnancy/drug-use-during-pregnancy
Kesmodel, U., Wisborg, K., & Olsen, S. F. (2002). Moderate alcohol intake during pregnancy and the risk of stillbirth and death in the first year of life. . American journal of epidemiology, 155(4), , 305-312.
Sannerstedt, R., Lundborg, P., Danielsson, B. R., & Kihlstrom, I. (1996). Drugs during pregnancy. . Drug safety, 14(2), , 69-77.
Streissguth, A. P., Barr, H. M., Martin, D. C., & Herman, C. S. (1980). Effects of maternal alcohol, nicotine, and caffeine use during pregnancy on infant mental and motor development at eight months. Alcoholism:. Clinical and Experimental Research, 4(2), , 4 – 12.