Drug addiction in infants

The term addiction can not be properly applied to infants who have been prenatally exposed either to legal or illegal substances.[1] Addiction is a technical term that refers to compulsive behavior that continues in spite of adverse consequences.[2][3] Thus, by definition, infants cannot be "addicted" to drugs. Addiction is different from in utero physiologic dependence on opiates, known as Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome, which is readily diagnosed. No such symptoms of dependence have been found to occur following prenatal cocaine or methamphetamine exposure.[4][5]

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