Quit Smoking for Your Baby's Health
Almost everyone knows that smoking is bad for your health. But did you know that smoking during pregnancy can also harm your baby? Studies show that women who smoke or who are exposed to secondhand smoke during pregnancy have a greater risk for several problems. These can include miscarriages, issues with the placenta, birth defects, and babies born too early or smaller than normal. Smoking during and after pregnancy is also a risk factor for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
According to a survey by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 55% of women who smoked 3 months before pregnancy quit during pregnancy. That’s the good news. But 40% of these women start smoking again within 6 months after giving birth.
So, what can you do?
First, if you smoke, try to quit right away. Studies show that quitting during the first trimester offers the greatest benefits. However, quitting at any time during pregnancy can help. Ask your healthcare provider at your first checkup about how to help quit smoking. You’ll feel better. Plus, your baby will grow and form in a healthier space.
Second, make your environment as smoke-free as possible. Don't allow people to smoke in your home or car.
Also check out the website http://women.smokefree.gov/pregnancy-motherhood.aspx for tips to quit smoking.
Online Medical Reviewer: Bowers, Nancy, RN, BSN, MPHFoley, Maryann, RN, BSN
Date Last Reviewed: 3/11/2016
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