By: Admin_Mike1 Nov 2012
Similar to the cocaine-exposed babies of the 1980s, many children in today's world are born dependent on prescription opiates.
Very little is known about the effects opiates have on their development, but obviously it does not affect them for the better.
A very small percentage of licensed professionals are even willing to care for and treat pregnant women that are addicted to opiates.
Unfortunately, there still isn't a tried and true system of care for the newborn children, partially because of the high difficulty of gathering research on pregnant women and newborns.
The doctors who do decide to care for pregnant addicts come up against a powerful question of ethics: deciding whether or not the injury that would occur by giving a fetus powerful drugs is worth the risks to both the mother and the baby.
As it stands, there are no legitimate statistic that demonstrate the magnitude of the issue. We do know that this phenomenon has grown very fast thanks to the testimonial accounts of numerous researchers, doctors, social workers and women who heavily abused opiates and painkillers while with child.
Interestingly, this phenomenon is more prevalent in areas where the population is sparse, where drug and opiate abuse is much more common.
In cities like Augusta, Maine prescription drug abuse is well known and documented. The amount of infants that are examined or treated for opiate withdrawal elevated from about 70 to 276 in the year of 2010 in Augusta.
Medical facilities in states like Ohio and Florida saw very similar increases, and most statisticians said these figures were more than likely much higher since women who are pregnant are only occasionally screened for opiate use and a large amount of those mothers verbally omit abusing painkillers.
As it stands, the amount of children being born in the U.S. today addicted to painkillers is on the rise, with no real sign of slowing. The 1980's image of "crack babies" may soon be replaced with the 2010's version of "opiate babies."