If you are planning a pregnancy, are pregnant or have just had a baby and are interested in stopping smoking you can access free, friendly advice and support at hospital or in the community.
Why should I stop smoking?
When you smoke a poisonous gas called carbon monoxide is inhaled into your lungs and into your baby’s blood stream. So that every time you have a cigarette it is like squeezing the cord and reducing the oxygen levels in the baby's blood.
Carbon Monoxide is also found in faulty boilers, gas appliances and car exhausts.
As well as the reduction in oxygen levels there are approximately 4000 chemicals found in a cigarette such as jet plane fuel, rat poison and nail varnish remover, these can also cause your baby to have problems.
Can I reduce the amount I smoke and be safe?
No, the only way of being safe is to stop smoking and not have one single puff. Reducing the amount you smoke is always beneficial but you cannot increase the baby's oxygen level completely until all of the poisonous gases are removed from the baby’s blood supply.
Problems caused by smoking in pregnancy
During the pregnancy:
- Premature Birth
- Cot death
- Baby which is stillborn
- A baby with low birth weight
When your baby is born:
- It is more likely to be admitted to children’s ward with pneumonia, glue ear, breathing problems and Asthma.
- Your child is less likely to do well at school.
- Your child is more likely to have problems later in life with their breathing even if they never smoke.
The Good News!
If you stop smoking your baby’s oxygen levels return to normal within 72 hours. Reducing the risks to that of a normal smoke free pregnancy.
It is never too late to stop smoking
Throughout your pregnancy there are benefits to stopping. Increasing the oxygen levels to your baby encourages better development of the lungs and helps the baby to gain a healthy amount of weight, which is important for the baby during the antenatal period, labour and after the baby is born.
Can I use Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) like patches and gum?
You must speak to a Specialist Stop Smoking Practitioner who can help you decide which product would be best suited to you. In pregnancy NRT can be used but it can only be prescribed in pregnancy by a Specialist Stop Smoking Practitioner.
Should my partner stop smoking?
If you live with anyone who smokes if they could stop smoking with you that would be great for all of you. It is important that you are aware that even if you don't smoke but your partner smokes in the home or car you are at risk. This includes the risk of cot death.
When your baby is born it will be more likely to attend children’s ward with breathing problems, glue ear and asthma.
Even if your partner cannot stop smoking they should be encouraged to smoke several steps outside the house, never at the back door or in the car. If your partner or family member needs help to stop they can see a Specialist Stop Smoking Practitioner at the same time.
For more information please contact Catriona, Specialist Stop Smoking Practitioner for Macclesfield on 07976 984411 or Caroline, Specialist Stop Smoking Practitioner for Leighton on 07976 984405.
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