Sammy Warnes was dealing with hyperemesis gravidarum.
The 30-year-old mom-to-be was struggling with hyperemesis gravidarum during her pregnancy at the time when she was expecting her now 3-year-old daughter, Arabella. Hyperemesis gravidarum is a severe form of morning sickness that affects some pregnant women. The symptoms include frequent vomiting and extreme nausea.
She said it got so bad that she considered terminating her second pregnancy.
Doctors gave her a prescription for Domperidone, which is a drug that is used to relieve nausea and vomiting, but she said the symptoms disappeared for only 20 minutes. After the strong medication her doctor prescribed didn't work, she turned to Google for answers and found forums where other mothers suggested she tried cannabis.
"The thing is the prescription drugs do more damage," she claims. "There's risk of birth defects so they're quite scary to be fair. One of them was making my body do random movements. That stuff panics me."
She reveals that she began taking a puff or two from a joint and that alleviated her symptoms up until they disappeared 25 weeks into her pregnancy. "It's actually saved both me and my baby's life," she added, noting that her baby was born healthy.
She has again turned to cannabis during her second pregnancy.
After dealing with a severe case of morning sickness during her first pregnancy, she's facing the same symptoms now that she's expecting her second child, but this time she is a firm believer that cannabis will help.
"This time around has been 10 times worse," she tells Wales Online. "I've had to give my job up because I just couldn't do anything. With just two puffs I'm able to be a parent to my daughter. I only do it a few times a week. I can do normal things like go to the shops, take her to nursery and just be a mom. Beforehand I was just being sick or waiting around to be sick."
She knows people are judging her. "People will say 'Oh she just wants to be a druggie' but it's not that at all. But I don't get high off it. It's a couple of puffs with a minimum bit of [tobacco.]"
She went against experts and her doctor's advice, but she says it worked for her.
Using cannabis regularly during pregnancy can affect the baby's brain development, but it's a risk she took. But the mom claims her daughter was born "fit and healthy" in June 2016. Now that she is pregnant again, and expecting another child in May 2020, she has been dealing with the same symptoms and says she has had no choice but to take it again.
"This time the sickness was 10 times worse and I was considering having a termination," she says. Her partner is supportive and she has chosen not to share the details with her midwife and although her family is "anti-drugs," they support her. "When I told them the full story, they were like 'if it works for you that's fine,'" she says. Although this worked for Sammy, every woman and situation is different, so please consult your doctor.