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New Facts on Pregnancy and Smoking

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


Every mother wants a healthy baby and quitting smoking within the first 15 weeks of pregnancy is one way to help make that happen. According to a recent study in British Medical Journal, women reduced or even eliminated some negative effects of smoking on the pregnancy when they quit within the first 15 weeks. Conversely women who kept smoking after that point in time had more complications.

“Compared to nonsmoker and women who had stopped smoking, women who do not stop smoking within the first 15 weeks have significantly higher rates of spontaneous preterm birth,” commented Dr. Lucia Larson, MD, director of the Center of Obstetric and Consultative Medicine at Women and Infants Hospital.

Steps in the Right Direction

Low birth weight and premature birth are just two risks women face when they smoke while pregnant. While quitting smoking can be a difficult task, there is help out there for women so that they and their babies can be healthy.

1. Prenatal Care: Obtaining prenatal care within the first ten weeks of pregnancy is important for healthy development of the baby and maintaing the health of the mother.
2. Lifestyle Advice: In addition to monitoring pregnancy symptoms, advice on lifestyle is crucial for a healthy pregnancy. This lifestyle counseling can help women with cessation.
3. Prevention: If a woman is trying to get pregnant or thinks she may become pregnant, it is encouraged to quit smoking prior to pregnancy.

If you need to find an OB or midwife, call Women & Infants Hospital at 1-800-921-9299.


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