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Newborn Withdrawal Care Guide


Abusing a substance is a dangerous habit that can have a drastic effect on the physical and mental health of the person struggling. It can even leave an emotional scar on those closest to them. Sadly, there is another phenomenon that highlights just how destructive addiction can be, even in those that didn’t choose to take the substance themselves. Also referred to as neonatal abstinence syndrome, the newborn child of a mother with an addiction can experience withdrawal symptoms following birth and even be born addicted to the abused substance. Banyan Treatment Center Delaware is breaking down newborn withdrawal care and how to handle such a situation. 

How Long Does Withdrawal Last in Newborns? 

A baby’s symptoms will typically begin 1 to 7 days after being born and most often will dissipate by the time the child reaches 6 months. It is caused by exposure to a variety of substances, ranging from illicit to prescription drugs. 

Common drugs include: 

  • SSRIs, such as Lexapro, Prozac, or Zoloft 
  • Barbiturates, which on the streets are referred to as phennies or yellow jackets  
  • Benzodiazepines, like Xanax, Klonopin and Valium 
  • Opioids, including Oxycontin, Percocet, Heroin, or Suboxone 

It is also possible for the baby of an alcoholic mother to experience both withdrawal symptoms and lifelong complications resulting from fetal alcohol syndrome. No matter the drug of choice, abusing a substance at any point, especially while pregnant, is a sign that a person’s judgment is impaired by addiction. In pregnant women, this can result in profound consequences for both the mom and the baby. If you fear that you or a loved one is at risk, we advise seeking out addiction treatment like that offered at our Delaware rehab center. 

Newborn Withdrawal Symptoms 

There are specific physical and visible signs that a baby is suffering from withdrawal. 

Symptoms of withdrawal in newborns can include: 

  • Persistent crying 
  • Body tremors or twitching 
  • Irregular sleep patterns 
  • Slowed weight gain 
  • Abnormal breathing 
  • Difficult breastfeeding 
  • Rigidity in the limbs 
  • Diarrhea or vomiting 

One of the more serious symptoms of newborn withdrawal is seizures, which can pose a serious threat to a baby’s health and safety. This is why close monitoring is one of the most crucial steps in caring for a child with this condition. Other treatment methods include medication and sensitive care. The latter is particularly important.  

A baby going through withdrawals is far more susceptible to adverse health effects, meaning that practicing intuition toward the needs of the child is crucial. For proper sensitive baby care, comfort, closeness, and consistency are key. These all allow the child to receive the attention they need, ensuring steps can be taken if an issue does arise. 

Get Proper Addiction Treatment With Our Delaware Rehab 

A baby suffering from withdrawals should receive consistent medical care and monitoring, attention, and love. For an adult who needs to handle their own symptoms, our detox in Delaware is an excellent option. Patients can pass through uncomfortable or dangerous withdrawal symptoms while under the care of trained medical professionals. Once this concludes, those in recovery have the chance to receive life-changing programming that can help them take the steps necessary to show up for the loved ones in their life. 

To learn more about the levels of care we offer to patients, call Banyan Delaware’s team of intake specialists at 888-280-4763 today. 


Related Reading 

You Are Never Too Old: Substance Abuse in the Elderly 

The Dangers of Pregnancy and Addiction 

Alyssa, Director of Digital Marketing
Alyssa, Director of Digital Marketing
Alyssa is the National Director of Digital Marketing and is responsible for a multitude of integrated campaigns and events in the behavioral health and addictions field. All articles have been written by Alyssa and medically reviewed by our Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Darrin Mangiacarne.