Rehabilitation vs. Prison: the Pregnant Addict

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Rehabilitation vs. Prison: The Pregnant Addict

Imagine a woman pregnant and in prison. She is in prison because she is an avid drug abuser. She has no family, no emotional or psychological support and most importantly she has no hope. This woman has spent most of her life in and out of prison, and unfortunately she delivered eight drug-addicted children in prison. The mother is still in prison; the children are now a part of the system. This is a true story. Everyday thousands of babies are being born in prison to drug and alcohol addicted mothers. This is an epidemic that is commonly overlooked in today’s society. We must ask ourselves; is prison really the solution for pregnant addicts? How to deal with pregnant addicts is a delicate situation that should be addressed by placing pregnant addicts in rehabilitation centers rather then in prisons. Rehabilitating pregnant addicts is more beneficial and effective for the mother and her unborn child than prison is. There are many reasons pregnant addicts should not be placed in prison with other addicts. The most important reason prison is not an ideal place for pregnant addicts is placing a pregnant addict in prison will, in most cases, make the problem worse or leave the problem unchanged because they are not given a chance to be rehabilitated. Drug abuse has been linked to psychological and emotional problems. Pregnant addicts usually have to deal with pre-partum depression, poverty, lack of education, and a host of other economic and social issues. Many times these problems are effectively treated with counseling, therapy, educational training, moral support and medication to help wean patients off of drugs. Pregnant addicts do not have the benefits of these necessary rehabilitation services, as a result, some will never kick their habit and others will only get worse. Secondly, pregnant mothers require special prenatal care that is not usually available to them in prison. Prison conditions are usually...
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