Meth babies.
Im doing respite for another foster family for a few weeks. Both her baby and mine were born possitive for meth. I thought it be nice to post for new foster parents of how different and similar these babies are. The babies are one month apart, but since mine is older I can compare how she was when she was a month younger.

As I said both babies were born possitive for meth.
My baby was 4lbs at birth-hers was 7lbs none are premie.
My baby suffers tremors-hers does not.
My baby is very floppy. You pick her up and she is like melted marshmellow and just melts on you. Her baby is stiff. Hard to dress her and change diapers since she is so stiff.
My baby has her arms spread out and up. When I hold her she looks like a doll with her arms out. She is still easy to dress due to her not being stiff. Her baby has her arms in on her chest (normal), but stiff (not normal).
My baby has relaxed legs (normal). Her baby has frog legs. The are very spread out and bent up again very stiff and hard to put diaper on.
Both babies have torticollis (tight muscle on the neck). My baby's head goes to the right and forward. This causes her to not able to lift her head well since her musles are pulling the head down. Her baby has it to right back. Her head goes to the back and easier to lift head.
Both babies suffer of diarreah.
Both babies eat 4-5oz every 3-4 hours. My baby will gulp down the bottle, needs no burping, never spits up and has no tummy aches. Her baby drinks very slow, trouble sucking, have to burp her every ounce and they come out loud and huge and smelly, she alwasy spits up a lot and after has tummy ache.
My baby gained more weight and is very chubby. Her baby has not and is very thin.
My baby is pretty happy baby. Loves to be held, yet happy to be on the floor with her toys. Only cries when she is hungry and tired. Her baby is fussy, cries a lot, even when you hold her.
Both babies love to chat. I swear they are complaining to eachother about me.
Both babies love to be swaddled and both love the swing (thanks to foster mom she brought hers).
Both babies sleep well at night (thank god). They both get up only once at night.
Both babies are developmentally delayed and get therapy.

That all I can think of right now. I just wanted to share for those new ones. These are some things to look out for, but remember every baby is different and meth can affect them differently.
Wow! THanks for the info. Especially considering that most foster babies are taken away due to drug related issues. (Or so it seems anyway)
AS: A-man, age 8.5 years.
Foster Son, special needs/medically fragile- 17 months. -TPR 3/15/ Adoption to be fall 2015.
How old are the babies? )if I missed it, looked a few times, sorry!) Thanks for this post. It's always nice to hear first-hand experience. Smile You might want to let the other mom know about acupuncture for her little one. My DD was exposed to Heroin, Cocaine, Methadone, and some other stuff. The only physical problem she has had is hypertonia in her arms. We did the exercises our Occupational therapist gave us, but it wasn't showing the results we wanted. I have used acupuncture in the past for a torn rotator cuff (arm was STIFF!), and it worked wonders. What physical therapy could not do for me, acupuncture did (range of motion almost back to normal). Smile
Thank you this is great information!
Yes- Thank you for this great information. I think this also really shows us how each child is unique even when coming from similar circumstances.
Thanks for posting this, we actually may be matched with a meth exposed infant because they have been getting a lot of them in my area lately (before it used to be a lot of crack but now it's meth).
My Chubs is meth exposed and born at 8lbs something. He tremors when he is really mad. He has increased tone and was holding his head up at 10 days old. He goes from really stiff neck muscles to flopping around. He's hard to control and support his head because you never know what direction it's going. He used to have frog legs but they are getting better. He is very difficult to dress and change his diapers. His arms are VERY stiff and to his chest and hard to move. He has chronic diarrhea which has led to his current 10 days hospital stay due to a UTI. He also has a terrible ongoing diaper rash. At 6 weeks old he eats 3 oz every 3 hours all the time. He has terrible reflux, low tone of the throat which causes choking and swallowing issues. We've added 1 tsp of rice cereal per two ounces of his cereal to help his reflux. He spits up ALOT, has to be burped every ounce, and it's very loud and a man's Happy. He loves his swing and vibrating bassinet. He enjoys music and lights. I always hear story of drug exposed babies being very colicky...he is not. He's normal very easy to soothe by swaddling and wearing him on me.
Thank you so much for posting this! My DH & I are going to be fostering drug affected newborns. There is a HUGE need in our area, (our county took 20 newborns last month alone). I have done tons of research and taken classes, but reading the actual experiences here is so helpfull.
Your baby shows signs our meth-exposed newborna have had. One problem is many math users abuse other drugs as well and many will never admit to other substances that the baby did not already test positive for at birth. The othe baby sounds similar to cocoaine exposed newborns we've had.
Thanks for starting this thread. For anyone who is parenting a drug exposed newborn, and needs advice, I recommend consulting with the Pediatric Interim Care Center (PICC), in Kent, WA. [URL=""]PICC - Helping Babies Born Drug Affected[/URL]

I cannot say enough about the wisdom of the dedciated staff there. As a word of caution, the PICC staff are very sensitive to how these precious liltte ones are referred to.

Best wishes and good luck in your journeys!
They are brilliant but I miss the web site they used to have that saved my sanity more than once. I sent every foster parent I knew there! They took it down to sell their book, I think. INVALUABLE information but I liked it better FREE! Wink
ScrapMonkey said...
Your baby shows signs our meth-exposed newborna have had. One problem is many math users abuse other drugs as well and many will never admit to other substances that the baby did not already test positive for at birth. The othe baby sounds similar to cocoaine exposed newborns we've had.

I happen to have data on adopted children from the Florida foster care system (I do adoption research for my master's degree). In my data set, over 90% of the 59 meth users, almost 80% of the 187 crack users and almost 80% of the 214 cocaine users also used alcohol during pregnancy. Alcohol seems to be the worst teratogen, and it's hard to know which effects are alcohol related and which are drug related. In a study that I recently read, they studied brain MRIs of children who were meth exposed (BTW, the study found that about 80% of the mothers had also used alcohol) which found that meth seemed to make the alcohol related effects on the brain more pronounced.
I have a foster son who tested positive for meth at birth. Thank you so much for this information.
I have a question about the diarreah, how long the the babies have it. My son was fine until he was 15 days old then he got diarreah and has had it for a week.
I've heard Meth has some pretty strong effects as well. Our daughter was born cocaine addicted and her birthmom tested positive for cocaine 30/60/90 days back from the birth showing she was a heavy user. Our daughter had tremors until 3 months, very poor head control, screaming for hours everyday until about 7 months old, reflux, very small for age until about 9 months when she started catching up, asthma, multiple respiratory issues (infections, fluid in her lungs mainly), horrible eczema, moderate sensory issues, and hard to soothe. Developmentally she is on target now at 16 months. We just have ECI follow along services. I'm requesting OT but her pediatrician is not really on board. She wants to see if she continues to grow out of some of her sensory issues (she has improved over the past 3-4 months). Medically she will always be a challenge due to respiratory needs.

I agree with the study in regard to alcohol and drugs going hand in hand. It's hard for me to look at what my daughter has gone through realizing that it could have been prevented. Either way, I think these babies are amazing and have a great ability to overcome these challenges.
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