Pregnancy and Addiction – Resolution

Pregnancy and addiction are a bad combination for both parents and children and can result in complications during birth. Prevent Child Abuse America has taken a position on this issue.

A Resolution on Pregnancy and Addiction

Whereas, use of drugs, alcohol or tobacco during pregnancy can cause miscarriage, still birth, pregnancy and labor complications and/or permanent disabilities for the child (e.g. low birth weight, mental retardation, hearing impairment, poor responsiveness and learning disabilities).1

Whereas, babies exposed to drugs prenatally are often born with disabilities or are drug-dependent and start to go through withdrawal at birth, all of which presents many difficulties in caring for them, thereby increasing the stress of parenting and the risk of abuse or neglect.

Whereas, according to the U.S. Public Health Service, 13 percent of pregnant women in the U.S. smoke during pregnancy,2 and if all those women were to quit there would be an estimated 10 percent reduction in infant deaths.3

Therefore, be it resolved, that Prevent Child Abuse America supports:

Educating expectant parents about the risks of drug, alcohol and tobacco use during pregnancy.

Increasing the availability of treatment programs to help women quit the use and abuse of harmful substances including drug, alcohol and tobacco.

Increasing drug, alcohol and tobacco prevention and early intervention programs in school and work settings.

Collaboration among child abuse advocates and substance abuse experts in order to address the issue of pregnancy and addiction with a multifaceted approach.


  1. March of Dimes Fact Sheets. “Smoking During Pregnancy, Cocaine Use During Pregnancy, & Alcohol Use During Pregnancy.” 2000.
  2. March of Dimes Fact Sheets. “Smoking During Pregnancy.” 2000.
  3. Moller, AM and Tonnesen, H. “Smoking Cessation and Pregnancy.” September 1999. As cited on March of Dimes Fact Sheet: Smoking During Pregnancy

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