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How long does marijuana stay in the system?

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  1. #1
    DawnL
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    How long does marijuana stay in the system?

    When ds was born, his bmom tested positive for marijuana. But, they tested her a little bit later, and she was negative. The nurse explained that marijuana gets stored in our fat cells, and when a woman gives birth, she sweats out some of that stored marijuana, so to speak, and can test positive.

    So, I am wondering, if bmom tested positive because of "stored" marijuana at ds' birth, how long ago would she had to have been smoking it? Also, does anyone know of any of the negative side effects, for the baby, when the bmom smokes marijuana during her pregnancy? And how about smoking cigarettes? Is that just low birth weight possibilities?

    I'm not majorly concerned about anything. I've just been thinking about Jeran and his inability to say words, and got to thinking about bmom's drug use, during the first six weeks of her pregnancy. She had used crack every day, during the first six weeks or so, then quit because she was pregnant.

    I don't think Jeran is experiencing any problems from the drug use. He is very smart, and I honestly think my breastfeeding him helped him out a ton. He breastfed for 15 months (although I wish he would have kept going until he was 2). It's just that I was thinking of the drug use, and wondering if I should be watching for anything.

    We are still waiting for the hospital to call us, and set up the full speech evaluation. I spoke with the gal who did the initial evaluation for us, on Friday, and she said she had placed another call to the hospital to try to light a fire under their butts.

    When we went to Disneyland, he tried so hard to talk to us. He makes lots of sounds, and will say the first sound in several words. I've been trying to sing Old MacDonald's Had a Farm to him a lot, in hopes that he can get the animal names and sounds down. He now says "mahw" for "meow" and says "na" for "neigh". For "moo" he just says "ma". For Daphne he says "dah" and for Jeran he says "deh". I guess it's a start.....

    He'll be 20 months on Wednesday
    Last edited by DawnL; 07-04-2005 at 03:26 PM.
    DawnL Jim 21 wonderful years!
    Daphne-artist Jeran-future Spiderman Jalen-future Nascar champ


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  3. #2
    Loie
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    All I can share is the information I've come across in my research and my support as you discover what you can do for your sweet boy.

    Here's an article that particularly addresses the effects of marijuana use on a fetus: http://www.a1b2c3.com/drugs/wom06.htm

    From what I remember reading in all my research, THC (marijuana) can stay in the system for up to 2 months depending on amount of usage and metabolic rate in the individual. A good rule of thumb is 1 to 2 days per 1% body fat. If bmom says she smoked in the first six weeks of life and Jeran tested positive, it unfortunately points to her use closer to his birth, regardless of how the substance is stored. One-time usage can be undetectible within 2-3 days, and that it was detectible that long after the reported use, raises a red flag. But I would be far more concerned with the crack usage.

    Each kid is different. Some are effected by the use and show signs of some problems (all of which are treatable) while others show no signs that the drug use effected them at all. It's a mixed bag much like any of our mom's that smoked. Some of us have asthma as a result of that while some of us don't.

    Also, a search for "pregnancy+marijunan" in Google yields the following results: http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q...2Bmarijuana%22

    You're going to get answers that run the gambit depending on the source. A specialist in drug addiction medicine will report something entirely different that the PhD who posts for NORML, for example. But, you're a smart cookie and already had that one figured out.

    I'm glad to hear that you saw a speech therapist. An occupational therapist may also have more answers for you if it turns out that any of this is drug-related. I'll be looking forward to hearing what the speech therapist has to say and I hope she was able to "light" that fire!

    Hugs,
    Loie
    Last edited by Loie; 07-04-2005 at 08:53 PM.
    Mom to "I" Feb 2007 and "C" Nov 2007
    "For a long time, there were only your footprints & laughter in our dreams, & even from such small things, we knew we could not wait to love you forever." ~Brian Andreas


  4. #3
    DawnL
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    Thanks, Loie, for the info!
    Actually, Jeran did not test positive for anything at birth, so I felt good about everything (still do!) It was the bmom who tested positive, then a couple of hours later, tested negative. The nurse who told me reassured me that the initial positive result was from marijuana that had been stored in the body. I am sure she probably told me some kind of guideline of how long it may have been since bmom used marijuana, but I'll be darned if I can remember. I was just hoping someone here might have an idea.
    Thanks again for the links and info. And hopefully I will be hearing from the hospital this week!
    DawnL Jim 21 wonderful years!
    Daphne-artist Jeran-future Spiderman Jalen-future Nascar champ


  5. #4
    Loie
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    Sorry, I didn't pick up on the negative results in your first post. I sure hope they call you soon so you can get your questions answered.
    Mom to "I" Feb 2007 and "C" Nov 2007
    "For a long time, there were only your footprints & laughter in our dreams, & even from such small things, we knew we could not wait to love you forever." ~Brian Andreas


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    maj90
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    Hi Dawn-
    I don't have any answers on the drug questions, but just wanted to let you know that my nephew who just turned 2 says the same things that Jeran says. Ma for moo, Da for dad. kit for kitty, etc. and I know he has had no drug exposure. His Ped thinks he is just lazy and not ready to speak yet. Not sure if this helps at all but atleast now we know they have someone they "can" talk to
    Mary Ann
    mom to Tabitha 1/13/04
    our Blessing thru DA
    Before you were born: I dreamed of you, I imagined you, I prayed for you. Now that you're here: I hope for you, I love you and I thank God everyday for you. -Linda LaTourelle


  7. #6
    lisa in venice
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    I have never heard of marijuana having an efect on learning or speech. I have heard of kid who are cocaine exposed having language delays and learning deficits in language (reading, writting, spelling etc) but never anything about marijuana.

    lisa


  8. #7
    DawnL
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    Quote Originally Posted by BC-lisa in venice
    I have never heard of marijuana having an efect on learning or speech. I have heard of kid who are cocaine exposed having language delays and learning deficits in language (reading, writting, spelling etc) but never anything about marijuana.

    lisa

    Well, his bmom did crack every day for the first six weeks or so, so maybe there is a reason to be concerned.
    I don't think Jeran is lazy. He seems to genuinely want to tell us stuff. I have seen him, when out and about, trying to "talk", really talk, to strangers, and he can't. At the grocery checkout once, the bag girl wasn't paying him any attention. So, he pointed out the milk we bought, and gave the sign for milk. He was totally "talking" to her, but she didn't notice. He then pointed at me and said "mama", but she didn't notice. And, he pointed at Daphne and said "da", which is all he says for her name.

    At lunch today, he really wanted something, and I couldn't figure out what he wanted. He kept saying the "b" sound, but I didn't understand. Finally, I guessed binky, and he wanted it, but who knows if that's what he originally wanted?
    DawnL Jim 21 wonderful years!
    Daphne-artist Jeran-future Spiderman Jalen-future Nascar champ


  9. #8
    ssh
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    Dawn,

    I had done some research on this when we started the adoption process, and I don't recall Marijuana having any major lasting effects. I do recall the March of Dimes web site as one of the places that I did research and you may want to check them out. I know that women who smoke are more likely to have low birth-weight babies and born prematurely. Our bmom smoked and our daughter was both. I also bookmarked some other sites on drug use, etc but I can't remember them off the top of my head. I will have to look them up and get back to you.

    Obviously it depends on how often the drugs are used and how much, but they say that alcohol use (or abuse) can have just as bad or worse long terms effects on a baby as drugs. Many babies born to birthmoms who used drugs have little or no lasting effects.

    However, to help you with your son's speech, you may want to try sign language, if you haven't already. I took a class with my dd and we are learning it. I bought a book which is fairly easy to learn and you just start with the basics and add on new words as you use them. She is already starting to learn at 9 months! When I give the sign for bottle, she says "ba ba". They say that you can start singing when the babies are just 7-8 months old, but you can really start at any time... they often learn quickly and it is especially helpful when the child is having trouble getting the words out. It helps reduce his/her frustration when they have trouble communicating.

    I'll try to find the web sites and get back to you.
    Last edited by ssh; 07-05-2005 at 11:23 PM.


  10. #9
    Taylor'sMommy
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    Hello. I wanted to say you might consider having another evaluation done on him...something like from a pediatric development specialist. We are taking Will in a couple of wks. (For different reasons...but I haven't had the courage yet to share...of course now I'm like sort of coming out of the closet by revealing that!) But, a different type of dr may be able to reveal other things. I was told that this dr we are going to can do tests on Will to see if his bmom did drugs while pg with him. (He's 2 1/2 yrs old) This dr does evaluations on all kinds of children, some with speech delays, learning disablities, anger issues, etc.

    On a very positive note...I'm glad that Jeran is trying to speak. It's those babies that have no "want" to communicate with mommies that I worry about. (I taught pre-k and K) Even though it's frustrating for him to not be able to communicate...that intelligence is there...and it WILL come.

    God bless y'all.
    In His Love, Shelley
    Taylor - 9 years old
    Will - 5 1/2 years old
    And, precious Dh...Brad
    Joined the PAA fitness craze - Jan 1st
    Lost 8.5 lbs...15.5 more to lose!


  11. #10
    ssh
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    I just did a quick search on google. Mostly because I had recalled hearing that boys often have more speech delays than girls and thought I would see what it said. Maybe he does have a slight delay but it seems like he has the intelligence and is frustrated by not being able to communicate, rather than not wanting to (as Shelley said above). I think seeing a pediatric developmental specialist might be a good idea, as well and of course, having him tested. Hopefully it is nothing to worry about, but I know I would do the same thing as you, if I were in your shoes.

    Here are a few paragraphs from an article I found:

    Evaluation and Management of the Child with Speech Delay

    ALEXANDER K.C. LEUNG, M.B.B.S.
    Alberta Children's Hospital and University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada
    C. PION KAO, M.D.,
    Alberta Children's Hospital, Calgary, Alberta, Canada:


    Speech is the motor act of communicating by articulating verbal expression, whereas language is the knowledge of a symbol system used for interpersonal communication.1

    In general, a child is considered to have speech delay if the child's speech development is significantly below the norm for children of the same age. A child with speech delay has speech development that is typical of a normally developing child of a younger chronologic age; the speech-delayed child's skills are acquired in a normal sequence, but at a slower-than-normal rate.2


    To determine whether a child has speech delay, the physician must understand normal speech milestones.

    Speech delay has long been a concern of physicians who care for children. The concern is well founded, because a number of developmental problems accompany delayed onset of speech. In addition, speech delay may have a significant impact on personal, social, academic and, later on, vocational life. Early identification and appropriate intervention may mitigate the emotional, social and cognitive deficits of this disability and may improve the outcome.

    Normal Speech Development

    To determine whether a child has speech delay, the physician must have a basic knowledge of speech milestones. Normal speech progresses through stages of cooing, babbling, echolalia, jargon, words and word combinations, and sentence formation. The normal pattern of speech development is shown in Table 1.3


    TABLE 1
    Normal Pattern of Speech Development
    Age
    Achievement
    1 to 6 months Coos in response to voice
    6 to 9 months Babbling
    10 to 11 months Imitation of sounds; says "mama/dada" without meaning
    12 months Says "mama/dada" with meaning; often imitates two- and three-syllable words
    13 to 15 months Vocabulary of four to seven words in addition to jargon; <20% of speech understood by strangers
    16 to 18 months Vocabulary of 10 words; some echolalia and extensive jargon; 20% to 25% of speech understood by strangers
    19 to 21 months Vocabulary of 20 words; 50% of speech understood by strangers
    22 to 24 months Vocabulary >50 words; two-word phrases; dropping out of jargon; 60% to 70% of speech understood by strangers
    2 to 2 1/2 years Vocabulary of 400 words, including names; two- to three-word phrases; use of pronouns; diminishing echolalia; 75% of speech understood by strangers
    2 1/2 to 3 years Use of plurals and past tense; knows age and sex; counts three objects correctly; three to five words per sentence; 80% to 90% of speech understood by strangers
    3 to 4 years Three to six words per sentence; asks questions, converses, relates experiences, tells stories; almost all speech understood by strangers
    4 to 5 years Six to eight words per sentence; names four colors; counts 10 pennies correctly
    Information from Schwartz ER. Speech and language disorders. In: Schwartz MW, ed. Pediatric primary care: a problem oriented approach. St. Louis: Mosby, 1990:696-700.

    Epidemiology

    Exact figures that would document the prevalence of speech delay in children are difficult to obtain because of confused terminology, differences in diagnostic criteria, unreliability of unconfirmed parental observations, lack of reliable diagnostic procedures and methodologic problems in sampling and data retrieval. It can be said, however, that speech delay is a common childhood problem that affects 3 to 10 percent of children.4-6 The disorder is three to four times more common in boys than in girls.5,7


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