Quitting Smoking Is One Of The Best Parenting Decisions You Can Make
If youre finding it hard to stop, remember that if you quit smoking youre making one of the best possible decisions you can make for your child and for you. By giving up now, even though it may be difficult, you are giving your baby the best chance of healthy development and a straightforward birth.
You will also make it easier for yourself to maintain a no-smoking rule after your baby is born and living in a smoke-free home with parents who dont smoke is so important for the health of your child.
Remember to ask for the support you need and if you cant get that support from family and friends, ask your doctor to refer you to relevant services.
You can do this but you dont have to do it alone.
Using Medication To Quit
Evidence from a Cochrane Review of stop-smoking medications found some pretty confusing results. They reported that women who take nicotine replacement therapy are 40% more likely to not be smoking during late pregnancy. However, when only the higher-quality, placebo-controlled trials were analysed, NRT was found to be no more effective than a placebo. Review authors also noted that the majority of women in the trials didnt take all of the NRT they were given.
There wasnt enough evidence to conclude whether NRT has a good or bad effect on birth outcomes, but one trial followed up infants after birth and reported that infants of women randomised to NRT were more likely to have healthy development .
This review is currently being updated with the latest evidence, and a new Cochrane Review currently in progress is investigating the qualitative evidence about the factors that influence the uptake and use of NRT and e-cigarettes by pregnant women who smoke, so hopefully well be able to get a clearer picture soon.
A new Cochrane Review in progress is exploring what influences the uptake and use of NRT and e-cigarettes by pregnant women.
Get An Accountability Buddy
Think of it as the same as a gym buddy. Because in a way, it is, when you really think about it. Quitting smoking helps your body return to a healthy state, as does working out regularly, and this buddy is only there to promote good health all around.
Having someone there to call you out on slipping up or to be there for you to just call when you’re having a craving can work wonders. It’s easy to sneak that random smoke or piece of chocolate when no one is there to answer to. But having an accountability buddy makes me think twice about relapsing, so to speak. And after a while, your feeling of shame towards smoking will continue to smoking when your buddy doesn’t even know about it.
Get comfort and support from your accountability buddy
But, being pregnant, we can understand if you’d rather no one really know your struggles with kicking the nasty habit. If that’s the case, then consider downloading an accountability app instead of going to a physical person. Like people trying to lose weight, these kinds of apps send you reminders and words of encouragement that don’t really quit unless you force them to quit. And speaking of quittingâ¦
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Hypnosis And Quitting Smoking While Pregnant
A 2020 Cochrane review outlined that the safety and effectiveness of NRP and medications for quitting smoking during pregnancy were unconfirmed, and further research is needed.
After an extensive literature search, there is currently no scientific evidence to suggest that there are any health risks associated with using hypnotherapy or meditation to quit smoking. In fact, this search showed that there are numerous studies that demonstrate the benefits. One such study published in 2020 noted that undergoing hypnosis sessions proved to reduce nicotine cravings in smokers who wanted to quit using tobacco, but they struggled with the willpower to do so. Another study noted that hypnotherapy was even more effective than NRP.
How Does Smoking Affect Fertility
Smoking can cause fertility problems for you or your partner. Women who smoke have more trouble getting pregnant than women who dont smoke. In men, smoking can damage sperm and contribute to impotence . Both problems can make it harder for a man to father a baby when he and his partner are ready.3, 4
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Using A Patch To Quit
While there is no evidence to suggest that nicotine patches are harmful to fetuses directly, likewise there is no evidence to back up the contrary. Regardless though, the nicotine it provides you is still
much less harmful to your growing baby than actually smoking. And adopting the patch isnât a replacement for smoking forever. Rather, it is the temporary solution as you also ween yourself off your nasty habit all together.
As with adding anything specific like this to your body, we recommend consulting your healthcare professional first. But once you get the go ahead to stock up on patches, remember to remove them before bed and to keep at a 15 hour maximum per every 24 hours. Opting for a patch may not be the easiest or even most comfortable way to quit smoking, but sometimes that nicotine fix is what is effecting you the most and these will provide that.
Get Rid Of The Smell In Your Home
Once you decide to quit, the smell of smoke on everything in your house will either sicken or tempt you. Take the time to launder everything you can, including bedding, clothing, other linens, drapes, and other household textiles. Do it a bit at a time so you dont get overwhelmed and burn out. You may want to consider hiring someone to wash the walls in your home. Removing the tar and nicotine stains will also get rid of the smell.
Quitting smoking is hard for anyone, so dont expect to become a non-smoker overnight. Think of it as a journey, a transformation and a lifestyle makeover. Take advantage of all the free online resources, and most of all, build a network of supporters. By taking advantage of free community support forums and other tools, you connect with a lifeline that will continue to give you support and to help you continue your life as a non-smoker.
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Talk To Your Health Care Provider
The governments Womens Health division advises all women to talk to their doctor, nurse practitioner, or other health care provider about prescription and non-prescription medications or other therapies for quitting smoking. Researchers havent figured out what, if any, effect smoking cessation products have on pregnant women or how safe they are.
Benefits Of Stopping Smoking In Pregnancy
Stopping smoking will help both you and your baby immediately. Harmful gases, such as carbon monoxide, and other damaging chemicals will clear from your body. When you stop smoking:
- you will reduce the risk of complications in pregnancy and birth
- you are more likely to have a healthier pregnancy and a healthier baby
- you will reduce the risk of stillbirth
- your baby is less likely to be born too early and have to face the breathing, feeding and health problems that often go with being premature
- your baby is less likely to be born with a low birth weight. Babies of smokers are, on average, 200g lighter than other babies, which can cause problems during and after labour. For example, they are more likely to have problems keeping warm and are more likely to get infections
- you will reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome , also known as “cot death”.
Stopping smoking now will also help your baby later in life. Children whose parents smoke are more likely to suffer from asthma and other serious illnesses that may need hospital treatment.
The sooner you stop smoking, the better. But even if you stop in the last few weeks of your pregnancy this will benefit you and your baby.
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Can I Smoke One Cigarette A Day While Pregnant
Smoking even one cigarette while pregnant doubles the risk of SUID. Any amount of smoking during pregnancy even one cigarette doubles the risk of SUID. For mothers who smoke 1-20 cigarettes per day, each additional cigarette increased the chance of SUID by 0.7 times.
Diaper Vouchers Add Extra Incentive For Pregnant Women To Quit Smoking
It is not exactly cold hard cash, but dont poo poo it. Free diapers are enough of an incentive to encourage pregnant women to quit smoking and stay quit.
Free diaper vouchers are a central component of the Baby & Me Tobacco Free program. The national smoking cessation program, which partners with local agencies, works to eliminate tobacco use by low-income, pregnant and postpartum women. The program has given out $700,000 worth of diapers nationwide over the past 10 years to approximately 5,700 women who have enrolled.
Smoking during pregnancy can lead to premature and low-birth weight babies, who are associated with an array of short and long-term health problems. Postpartum, secondhand smoke can have damaging health effects on babies as well. Even with these well-documented dangers, however, it is often difficult for expecting mothers to quit smoking.
Our message at every point of contact is that quitting smoking is the most important thing you can do for the health of you and your baby, says Laurie Adams, national executive director and founder of Baby & Me Tobacco Free. That said, for our program to work, women need to agree to quit.
How It Works
We had a client who lived with her mother. They both quit, and our client had twins. They received four diaper vouchers a month postpartum, says Adams. There was also a 3-year-old child in the home who no longer had to be on asthma medication. This was a big win all around.
Launching the Program at Your Center
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Secondhand Smoke Harms Your Baby
If your partner or anyone else who lives with you smokes, their smoke can affect you and your baby before and after their birth. You may also find it more difficult to stop if someone around you smokes.
Secondhand smoke can also reduce your baby’s birthweight and increase the risk of sudden infant death syndrome , also known as “cot death”. Babies whose parents smoke are more likely to be admitted to hospital for bronchitis and pneumonia during their first year.
To find out more about quitting and to get support, your partner can call the NHS Smokefree helpline on from 9am to 8pm Monday to Friday, and 11am to 4pm Saturday and Sunday.
Quitting Smoking Is Essential For Pregnancy
Smoking both before and during pregnancy poses many risks to your baby.
Here are some tips to help you deal with quitting:
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Get Help To Stop Smoking
If you stop smoking now it will make a big difference to your health and the health of your developing baby. The earlier you give up smoking in pregnancy, the better. But quitting at any stage will benefit both you and your baby, so don’t give up on giving up.
If you’re finding it difficult to quit smoking, it’s really important to get help. People who get help from stop smoking advisers are four times more likely to quit successfully. Your doctor or midwife can guide you towards any help and advice that’s available.
You can also look for an app. Some give you daily tips, advice and encouragement, such as showing you how much you are saving and showing how you are benefiting from being smoke-free. The NHS has a quit app that has all of the above. You can put a scan picture of your baby in as motivation.
Take A Cue From The Yuck Jar Idea
It sounds like what it is – a jar filled with disgusting things to make you gradually repulsed by offensive cigarettes. Using a jar with holes poked through the lid, add in some water and crushed up cigarettes. When you feel a craving coming on, take a big ole whiff of the stench coming from the jar and even the most seasoned smoker will gag.
And make it a clear jar, so that you can see the liquefied cigarettes and a glimpse of what your insides look like because of smoking. It would definitely be enough to turn off anyone. We all know that smoking is terrible for you on its own, let alone for a baby growing inside of your belly. You don’t need us to tell you that or what harm smoking can do to more than just your lungs over time.
Let your natural instinct of disgust help you quit smoking
But the good news is that if you can find use in at least one of these safe ways to quit smoking, then you’ll be able to proudly say that you’re smoke-free and so is your baby. And by the time they’re old enough to run around on little stubby legs, you’ll be able to chase after them without getting winded. Pretty cool, huh?
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Pregnant Women Who Are Not Ready Or Motivated To Quit Smoking
There will always be pregnant smokers who refuse to go through the process of trying to quit, either under the impression that the risks do not apply to them or not even disclosing the true reasons behind their reluctance. For women not motivated to quit smoking, counseling should focus on enhancing motivation and addressing the womans personal barriers to cessation.
The 5Rs process can be used ,. The use of carbon monoxide screening or monitoring can be an effective non-judgmental way of identifying maternal exposure to tobacco smoke that might not otherwise be discussed,. MI is also a counseling technique, which can be used with pregnant women who are ambivalent or resistant to change.
Quitting Smoking While Pregnant: What Works
Nicotine patches, Zyban helped 4 out of 5 women, study says
“In public health terms, these results are significant because one in five pregnant women smokes,” said study author Anick Berard, a professor with the Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Montreal.
“We already know that smoking during pregnancy increases the chances of miscarriage as well as low birth weight, premature birth and birth defects — events that are linked to health problems in children,” Berard said in a university news release.
However, the study authors added that pregnant women or those looking to become pregnant should check with their doctor before taking any medication.
The new study results will give pregnant women evidence-based options to quit smoking, Berard said. They’ll “also give data to health care professionals for them to prescribe the right treatment while evaluating the risks and benefits associated with each pharmacological method,” she said.
The study looked at nearly 1,300 pregnant women in Quebec. It found that 80 percent of pregnant women who used nicotine patches or Zyban were able to stop smoking. Even after they discontinued using the products, 68 percent of those who used nicotine patches and 60 percent of those who used Zyban did not start smoking again during or after pregnancy.
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Pregnancy And Quitting Smoking
Ideally, a pregnant woman should stop smoking. In reality, less than half of females quit when pregnancy is planned or confirmed. If you need help to quit, see your health professional for information and advice.
You can also call the Quitline . Quit Specialists will provide free support during your pregnancy and for some time after to help you remain a non-smoker. Aboriginal Quit Specialists are also available.
If you are finding it tough to stop smoking, dont despair. There is evidence to suggest that stopping smoking by the fourth month of pregnancy can reduce some of the risks, such as low birth weight and premature birth.
Nicotine Replacement Therapy In Pregnancy
Nicotine is very addictive and it is common to have strong cravings for cigarettes and withdrawal symptoms such as restlessness and irritability.
If you are really struggling to quit, you might consider nicotine replacement therapy . Licensed NRT products are free of charge, safe to use in pregnancy and can increase the chances of quitting successfully. The product eases the withdrawal symptoms by giving you small amounts of nicotine but without the harmful toxins and chemicals you get from smoking tobacco.
NRT is available in different doses, which are prescribed according to how much you were smoking before you stopped. You can then slowly reduce the amount of NRT you are using until you dont need it at all.
Licensed NRT products can increase the chances of quitting successfully. This is particularly the case when combined with specialist help from local stop smoking services.
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