A lethal combination When you light your cigarette in pregnancy, you’re not the only one who smokes – Your unborn baby does to! Smoking can have serious consequences for your baby if you keep smoking throughout your pregnancy. Ignorance is bliss… Look at the reasons below to know why you must stop smoking during pregnancy.
- Cigarette smoking during pregnancy can cause serious health problems to an unborn child (20 to 30% of low birth weight). Smoking during pregnancy has been linked to 14% premature labor, breathing problems and 10% fatal illness among infants.
- The odds of developing asthma are twice as high among children whose mothers smoke more than 10 cigarettes a day. Between 400,000 and 1 million asthmatic children have their condition worsened by exposure to secondhand smoke.
- Smoking during pregnancy is associated with high rates of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
- Smokers inhale nicotine and carbon monoxide, which reach the baby through the placenta and prevent the fetus from getting the nutrients and oxygen needed to grow.
- Children whose mothers smoke cigarettes during pregnancy had significantly lower IQ scores, according to a study conducted by Cornell University and the University of Rochester. (Behaviors problems and learning difficulties are enhanced).
- The most effective way to protect the fetus is to quit smoking. If a woman plans to conceive a child in the near future, quitting is essential. A woman who quits within the first 3 to 4 months of pregnancy can lower the chances of her baby being born premature or with health problems related to smoking.
Pregnancy is a great time for a woman to quit. No matter how long she has been smoking, her body benefits from her quitting because it lessens her chances of developing future tobacco-related health problems, such as lung and heart disease, and cancer.