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Motherhood is not often an easy task particularly when you’re the mother of an addicted child. The heartbreak and worry that we face while dealing with this horrible disease can make us feel isolated and alone. TAM is committed to providing our members with the best information possible about addiction treatment and recovery resources and helps us all to see that we are not alone in this journey.
Women who become pregnant while they are fighting for recovery face more difficulties and complications than their non-pregnant counterparts. There are relatively few treatment facilities that have the ability or resources to accept patients with a substance abuse problem who are also pregnant. Those that do accept pregnant patients limit their acceptance to the first trimester. Dr. Kristi Dively from Retreat Premier Addiction Treatment Centers provides the added assistance those expecting women need to continue their fight for sobriety. Retreat’s program has been developed in the past year and is the first of its kind in addiction treatment.
Dr. Dively grew up in Pennsylvania and took her training in OB/GYN. She spent several years in private practice and then in a non-clinical position before she transitioned into addiction medicine. Although she doesn’t have a personal experience with addiction, she feels that fate brought her to this type of treatment because of the lack of resources for this segment of recovery.
Retreat Premier Addiction Treatment Centers will treat women abusing any substance up to 32 weeks of gestation (roughly 8 months along). Dr. Dively works with local OB/GYN’s to coordinate their prenatal care with their plan of treatment including any necessary labs, ultrasounds, and specialist visits as required. She understands the needs of these women and feels that specialized care during their pregnancy is essential to assisting with their rate of success.
“The most rewarding aspect is following up with my pregnant moms and finding out they were still sober at delivery,” said Dr. Dively. She is proud of every patient of hers that reaches that milestone and feels that most of these patients want to get clean and sober but sometimes lack the skills or ability to make the changes happen. This program gives the tools they need to get to that point. Many women who reach the milestone of delivering sober tend to use their child as their incentive to maintain their sobriety as well.
It is not difficult to see the potential of such an innovative program as this. According to a University of Michigan study, 1 baby is born addicted to opiates every hour in the US and approximately 13,539 are born with Neo-Natal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS) every year. The March of Dimes describes NAS as a medical condition caused by exposure to drugs in the womb. The rates of addicted births and babies born with NAS have multiplied at least 10 times over the last decade and there seems to be little end in sight to that growing trend.
Dr. Dively and Retreat Premier Addiction Treatment Centers have developed an innovative program that is making a difference in the world of treatment and addiction recovery. What an inspiring option for women who face the struggle of addiction with the added complication of pregnancy.