Pothead Babies: Why So Many Newborns Are Testing Positive For Marijuana
Nurses at a North Carolina hospital noticed something strange recently: more and more newborns testing positive for marijuana during screening tests. In fact, the spike was so drastic that researchers decided to look into the matter. Turns out that certain soaps – surprisingly popular ones from big names like Aveeno and Johnson & Johnson – are the cause.
Before you toss out your baby soap – or, rather, attempt to smoke it – know that the infants were not actually high. (Sadly, no babies watching The Big Lebowski with a giant bowl of all dressed.) “It’s not marijuana in any way, shape or form,” said study researcher Catherine Hammett-Stabler of the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Yes, the newborns tested positive for THC (the active ingredient in marijuana), but you can rest assured they weren’t teething on any frozen pot cookies.
“We really did this to help protect families from being falsely accused [of drug use],” explained Hammett-Stabler. And it’s a good thing! Could you imagine social services getting called in when all you did was bathe your newborn? According to msnbc.com, newborn drug screening is quite common, especially for babies born to women considered high risk for drug use.
No one’s sure why the soaps are causing babies to test positive for THC, but Hammett-Stabler thinks it could be that some of the compounds in the soap have a structure that is partly similar to THC, or perhaps the chemicals in the soap change the way the test works.
In case you’re wondering, the bad-ass soaps are the following: Johnson & Johnson’s Head-to-Toe Baby Wash, J&J Bedtime Bath, CVS Night-Time Baby Bath, Aveeno Soothing Relief Creamy Wash and Aveeno Wash Shampoo. In other words, something we’ve all used at one point or another.
(Photo: Solovyova Lyudmyla/Shutterstock)