Dangers of Smoking During Pregnancy

drug treatment in Asheville NCDo you smoke cigarettes? Have you often wondered if you should or will quit smoking if you ever become pregnant? Do you have a friend or loved one that is currently smoking while with child? If so, you might want to consider the dangers that come with using tobacco during pregnancy. They might want to even consider drug treatment in Asheville NC to help them.

Of course, smoking at all is bad for your health. It causes all kinds of issues that can lead to serious diseases or death. Because we know the risks that come with smoking, it's important to share this information with anyone who's struggling to quit.

Most mothers choose to quit smoking tobacco as soon as they find out they are with child. Unfortunately, there are many who do not quit. The babies that are developing during pregnancy while the mothers smoke are at a disadvantage both at birth and later on in life as well.

“While it’s vital that pregnant smokers quit to give their baby the best start in life, the risk of serious harm from smoking doesn’t disappear once the baby is born. And all smokers in the home need to be encouraged to quit, or at least not to expose the baby to tobacco smoke, as whoever or wherever it comes from, tobacco smoke increases the risks of breathing problems and sudden infant death,” according to Deborah Arnott, chief executive of the charity Action on Smoking and Health.

As you can see here, smoking during pregnancy doesn’t just affect the baby before it is born. It can leave lasting issues even after birth. Smoking while pregnant can cause breathing difficulties and even death in some infants.

According to the CDC, there are many possible negative effects for babies whose mothers smoke while pregnant:

  • Children might be born with heart defects.
  • Babies’ lungs won’t function well if exposed to cigarette smoke.
  • Damage to the placenta leading to bleeding and less oxygen for the baby
  • Increased risk of miscarriage or sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)
  • Smoking can also cause early births and underweight babies.
  • The pregnant woman can suffer health effects such as throat cancer and high blood pressure.
  • With risks such as these, it is important for pregnant women to protect the health of their unborn babies by abstaining from cigarettes.
  • Your children can suffer from lifelong learning disorders.

In our last blog post, we talked about the effects smoking has and all the different problems it can cause in adult long term smokers. You can only imagine what it might do to a newborn or yet to be born child after reading the following.

The effects of smoking can cause:

  • Worsened night vision
  • White blood cell counts elevated
  • Weakened immune system
  • Weakened bone health
  • Tired muscles
  • Thined bone tissue
  • Stressed heart
  • Sticky blood
  • Bigger bellies with no muscle
  • Scarring of the lung
  • Risk of infection after injury
  • Muscle deterioration
  • More vulnerable to autoimmune diseases
  • Lowered female levels of estrogen
  • Lack of oxygen to the muscles
  • Higher risk of bone fractures
  • Hearing loss
  • Fatty deposits
  • Emphysema
  • Decreased ability for body to fight cancer
  • Damaged cilia in lungs
  • Cavities
  •  Slowly healing wounds
  • Respiratory infections
  • Inability to grow new bone tissue
  • Cilia infections
  • Bone density loss
  • Blindness
  • Aging and wrinkling skin
  • Addiction

Quitting smoking is important. Even for those that aren't pregnant, consider ceasing this habit for health purposes. It is especially important for those who are with child to stop the addiction.

The following tips can help you quit smoking and cope with triggers that are associated with urges to smoke:

  • Use sugar-free mints, gum and other hard candy to fight urges.
  • Stay away from the designated smoking area in any public place.
  • Stay away from people who usually smoke around you if they can’t respect your wishes.
  • Stay away from any public place that allows smoking like clubs, restaurants and more.
  • Stay active. Don’t get bored. Instead, read a book, start a new hobby or exercise to keep your mind off cravings.
  • Seek support from a group or family members that can help you by distracting you from cravings.
  • Hide all ashtrays and lighters at home.
  • Drink fewer caffeinated beverages; caffeine may stimulate your urge to smoke. Also avoid alcohol, as it may also increase your urge to smoke and can be harmful to your baby.
  • Change habits if possible. If you’re used to smoking after dinner, find something else to distract you at that moment.
  • Ask people to refrain from smoking around you.

Even if you don't currently smoke while pregnant, second hand smoke can cause problems with your baby. That's why it's key to stay away from public places that allow smoking indoors. You don't want tobacco and nicotine to harm your baby. Be sure to take the necessary precautions to ensure that your child is born safe and healthy.

We hope this information helps you understand why smoking during pregnancy is dangerous. It's important to abstain from smoking at all times, but especially when with child. The dangers for not only yourself but also for your baby are too much to risk. Stop smoking today and live a healthier life without tobacco and nicotine. Give your baby an opportunity to thrive in health from day one! You can even call our facility for alcohol and drug treatment in Asheville NC for more information.

If you missed our previous blog post, be sure to read it here. You'll find more information about smoking in women, especially those that choose to restart their smoking habit after childbirth.

If you, or someone you love, are suffering from substance abuse, it's time to get help. We know how you feel. Alone, angry and scared. The dependency is something that makes you feel out of place. You're not alone. There are numerous people dealing with addiction, all over the world.

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We know how hard it is to beat addiction. That’s why we’ve come up with a better, more successful, program that will help.  Addiction can leave you feeling sad, lonely, and angry. You are not alone. We can help you get back on track to a healthier, happier life with affordable alcohol and drug treatment. Contact us now to learn more.

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