There are many reasons pregnant women shouldn’t smoke, and I’d love to share a few of them with you today. Smoking is harmful to the human body whether you are pregnant or not, but it carries even greater risks for expectant mothers and their babies. If you are a smoker, and expecting a baby, I hope this article will encourage you to put down the cigarettes for the safety of your child, as well as your own health! Here are 7 top reasons pregnant women shouldn’t smoke.
1. Low Birth Weight
One of the reasons pregnant women shouldn’t smoke is because it can contribute to a low birth weight for their baby. The nicotine in cigarettes can stunt and prevent proper growth in your little one. Low birth weight babies may spend time in the NICU after birth, so don’t put your baby at risk for this possibility.
2. SIDS and Stillbirths
Women who smoke increase their baby’s chances of SIDS, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. Many women take their baby home, thinking everything is fine, only to discover that the baby isn’t breathing or has succumbed to SIDS. Stillbirths are common among women who smoke or breathe secondhand smoke too.
3. Placental Abruption
Placental abruption occurs when the placenta pulls away from the baby or the uterus wall during labor or delivery. It can have very serious health repercussions for mom and baby. Smoking really ups your chances of experiencing placental abruption, so put down those cigs if you are expecting!
4. Increased Chances of Respiratory Problems
Babies whose mothers smoked while they were pregnant have a higher risk for respiratory problems at birth and throughout life. Your baby’s chances of having asthma increase drastically if you smoke during your pregnancy. And ear infections are quite common to see in little babies if their mother was a smoker.
Is your baby colicky? Did you smoke while you were pregnant? Recent studies have reported that smoking moms lead to colicky babies. Colic is not only painful for your baby, it makes it hard for him or her to eat and sleep, and causes the baby to cry a lot. Of course, colic may be present in babies whose mothers did not smoke as well.
6. Birth Defects
Smoking causes birth defects. We now know this fact, thanks to modern science. Some of the birth defects your baby may experience if you smoke include cleft lip and palette, club foot, heart and respiratory problems, and eye defects. Digestive problems in small babies have also been linked to smoking mothers.
7. Premature Birth
Mothers who smoke are more likely to go into early labor and birth premature babies than those who don’t smoke. Smoking is bad all around, and your baby suffers the worst of it! A premature baby has lower chances of surviving, and may have health problems throughout his or her life.
Of course, sometimes babies are born with many of these problems and their mothers did not smoke. These just happen to be a few of the risks that you place in your baby’s path if you DO smoke while pregnant. If you pause to consider the risks, you have to ask yourself if it’s really worth it. Smoking, just like any other habit in life, can be given up. Mothers who smoke also put themselves at risk. It’s simply not good for your health! Do you know any other reasons why pregnant women shouldn’t smoke? Please comment below and thanks for reading!