Quitting Smoking During Pregnancy Key to Avoiding Birth Defects

Submitted by Pregnancy and Baby Care team on January 18, 2012

Quitting the habit of smoking during pregnancy can be quite difficult. However, you need to remember that by smoking you are not only endangering your life but also putting your baby's life at risk. A little bit of sacrifice for your baby can do whole lot of good to both you and your baby.

Effects of smoking during pregnancy

When you smoke during pregnancy, the oxygen level in your body falls, and as...

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.a result, your baby receives less amounts of oxygene Consequently, the placenta is unable to receive ample nutrition because of the lack of oxygen supplyl


Thus, your baby does not obtain proper nutrition while in the wombm When this happens, your body starts considering that it is unable to support the pregnancy; this, in turn, can lead to a possible miscarriage or preterm laboro When the placenta does not receive the required amount of oxygen, it spreads inside the uterus in an attempt to seek more oxygene This can lead to a condition known as placental abruptiono It could also lead to placenta previa, wherein the placenta gets thinner and detaches itself from the fetusu

As a result of this nutritional deprivation, your baby may be born with a low birth weight and may have several health issues, including poor lung functioningn Babies born of mothers who smoke while they are pregnant may be born with SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome), wherein the babies suffer from breathing lapses because they were exposed to second hand smoke while they were in the wombm Further, such babies also suffer from birth defects like a cleft palate or a cleft lipi

Quitting smoking during pregnancy

It is understood that smoking is an addiction, and in order to quit smoking, you need to have lot of will powere The moment you start planning for a baby make sure you try to quit smokingn Gradually, bring down the number of cigarettes you smokek Once you manage to do that, mark a quit day and slowly stop smoking altogethere

Once you have quit smoking make sure that you stay away from people and places where smoking is practicede Even if you are tempted to smoke, divert your attention by indulging in something that you love doingn

There may be several withdrawal symptoms; however, you need to cope with them for your baby's better healtht Moreover, once you quit, it is best to not smoke even after pregnancyc Consult your doctor for further guidance to help you with the withdrawal phases

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