Is it bad for my baby if I smoke one or two cigarettes a day while I'm pregnant?

Is it bad for my baby if I smoke one or two cigarettes a day while I'm pregnant?

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One cigarette a day is one too many. Every cigarette you smoke narrows the blood vessels in the umbilical cord, reducing your baby's oxygen supply. Just one or two cigarettes a day can increase the risk of premature delivery, stillbirth, low birth weight, and other complications. And studies suggest that even light smoking during pregnancy can up your baby's odds for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).

Your body reacts especially strongly to the first cigarettes of the day. There's not much difference between smoking ten cigarettes and stopping at nine, but there's a huge gulf in safety between one cigarette and no cigarettes at all.

If you're smoking five or six cigarettes every day, cutting back to one or two probably won't do you or your baby any good. Without even thinking about it, you'll take more puffs from each cigarette and inhale more deeply, giving your body the usual dose of nicotine along with tar and other toxins. Light smokers have just one option if they want to protect their baby's health: Give up smoking entirely.

If you're currently a heavy smoker, you'll definitely be making progress if you can cut down to just a few cigarettes a day. No matter how hard you puff on a couple of cigarettes, they'll never be as dangerous as a whole pack. But don't make cutting back your ultimate goal. Instead, aim to quit completely as soon as you can. If your cravings for cigarettes seem impossible to resist, ask your doctor for help.

Watch the video: Smoking During Pregnancy Can Slow Fetal Growth - In Depth (September 2022).


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