Video: This Is Your Baby on Drugs

By May Wilkerson 05/21/13

Drug use during pregnancy is a major problem in the US. This video breaks it down.

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Drugs can mess any of us up. But for unborn babies, the effects of drug use can be especially nasty. The folks at 12 Palms Recovery Center in Florida have put together the latest "shocking statistics" in an in-depth motion-graphic video (below), laying out the facts of life for babies born to pregnant women who use alcohol and drugs. An estimated 150,000 babies are born each year in the US with birth defects—that's three out of every 100. And 4% of pregnant women use illicit drugs, which alone puts 176,200 unborn babies at risk of potential birth defects—many more, of course, are at risk from alcohol, tobacco or Rx drug use. Premature birth, brain damage, slow development, learning disabilities, HIV and obesity are all potential consequences. The video also illustrates which states have the highest rates of drug use during pregnancy (California and Texas), and how various substances—from meth to ecstasy to booze—can harm a baby.

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May Wilkerson is a writer, comic and Managing Editor @someecards. Co-host of the podcast Crazy; In Bed w/alyssalimp. She is also the top Google result for "insufferable lunatic." Follow this insufferable lunatic on Twitter.