A study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, reported that a baby is born every hour experiencing opiate drug withdrawal. This is known as neonatal abstinence syndrome, which means that the child has become addicted to drugs while in the womb as a result of the mother using while she is pregnant.
Opiates consist of prescription painkillers as well as street drugs like heroin, methadone, codeine, Dilaudid and Oxycontin. Many of the mothers developed opiate dependencies because of being prescribed painkillers in order to manage pain from an accident, for example. Others were heroin addicts. Opiates create artificial endorphins in the brain. Over time, the brain stops production of its natural endorphins. As a result, the user is only able to experience good feelings by using the drug, which of course becomes a vicious cycle.
The number of babies with this condition has almost tripled in the past ten years. Infants with this condition are born earlier than they are supposed to, usually with a low birth weight. Some of the symptoms that these babies may suffer from include respiratory distress, tremors, seizures, vomiting and failure to keep down food. They also seem to feel uncomfortable and may scratch their faces. They must be monitored closely and are often treated with methadone. It is unknown if there any long-term health risks for these children, but some studies have shown that there may be a higher risk of developmental problems.
What’s The Cost Of This Growing Problem
The majority of this type of opiate abuse and babies born with opiate addictions is, for the most part, centralized in only a few areas. These include rural Kentucky, Maine, Tennessee and parts of Florida. This epidemic in expected to become more and more widespread as abuse of these drugs continues to rise. Medicaid covers many of the babies born with opiate addiction, which is a publicly financed program.
As a result of the increase in babies born with neonatal abstinence syndrome, healthcare costs have increased greatly. These babies often stay in the hospital for an average of 16 days after being born as opposed to only three days for a healthy baby. One study showed that the average hospital stay for a baby with this condition was more that $50,000 in 2009, in which Medicaid covered about 80 percent. This in much greater than the average cost of delivering a baby, which is around $10,000.
The costs affiliated with treating infants with this condition were $720 million is 2009. A study taken of records from over 4,000 hospitals across America showed an increase in the rate of babies with opiate addiction from one in 1,000 in 2000 to over three in 1,000 in 2009. According to this find, that would include approximately 13,500 newborns in the United States.
This isn’t very surprising given that the abuse of opiates, such as prescription painkillers, continues to rise among people in the US. In 2008, 14,800 people died from some kind of prescription opiate overdose, as stated by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This number has tripled in the past 20 years.
Reports And Solutions
Reports from narconon-news.org indicate that this is a major problem among those contacting the facility about rehab admissions. The governmental statistics above indicate the same.
The facility narconon-news.org recommends those pregnant women who are using opiate drugs get immediate help in order to prevent damage to unborn children. The longer and addiction like this goes on the more dangerous it can become for both the mother and baby.
For more information on this growing problem contact narconon-news.org today.