Again, this is all based on THC, but "until further studies are completed, pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers should not use CBD or other cannabinoids," Clifton says.
If new motherhood is really taking a toll — mentally, physically, or both — there are some safe alternatives to taking CBD.
But what if you're a new mom and also nursing? Is taking CBD still a good idea? Here's what you need to know about CBD and breastfeeding.
Is Any Kind of CBD Safe to Take While Breastfeeding?
"What research is telling us is that postpartum depression can last many months after the baby has arrived, so don't think you have to be a supermom immediately," says Dr. Williams. She suggests traditional talk therapy for anxious new moms or, if prescribed, SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor) as safe and effective treatment options.
CBD has been a hot topic in wellness and medicine for the past couple of years. Some people swear by the derivative of hemp to relax, de-stress, and sleep better. So it makes perfect sense that new mothers, dealing with sleepless nights thanks to late-night feeding and early mornings, out-of-whack hormones, or even postpartum anxiety and depression in some cases, would be curious about the benefits.
However, topical CBD salves and balms (rather than ingestible forms) are most likely to be a bit safer, because they aren't directly entering your bloodstream. Some doulas say you should be okay to use a topical product for sore muscles or nipples, as long as you clean the area before your baby nurses — but be sure to talk to your doctor first.
Are There Any Risks Associated?
"CBD and other cannabinoids have undergone intense scrutiny in the areas of managing anxiety and sleep, and can be beneficial for both immediate and long term stress and insomnia," Mary Clifton, M.D., an internal medicine doctor and leading cannabis and CBD expert, tells InStyle.
In other words, CBD can't just be treated like having a glass of wine if you're currently nursing. "The pump and dump method can't work because you have no idea if there is still CBD in your breastmilk," Dr. Williams adds.
FDA strongly advises against the use of cannabidiol (CBD), tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), and marijuana in any form during pregnancy or while breastfeeding.
What are cannabis, marijuana, hemp, THC and CBD?
We also know that there is a potential for CBD products to be contaminated with substances that may pose a risk to the fetus or breastfed baby, including THC. We have also heard reports of CBD potentially containing other contaminants (e.g., pesticides, heavy metals, bacteria, and fungus); we are investigating this.
Has FDA approved any CBD products and are there any benefits?
While breastfeeding, it is important to know that breastmilk can contain THC for up to six days after use. This THC may affect a newborn’s brain development and result in hyperactivity, poor cognitive function, and other long-term consequences.