Why Shouldn’t I Smoke During Pregnancy?
Cigarette smoking during pregnancy is harmful not only for the mother but the unborn baby as well. Cigarette smoke contains about 4000 known chemicals and 69 cancer causing carcinogens which travel into the bloodstream of the mother-to-be. The unborn infant gets oxygen and nutrients from the mothers blood itself.
Experts claim that nicotine and carbon monoxide are the major cause for pregnancy complications. Severe cases of complication contributed by excessive smoking by a pregnant mother include still births, premature infants and low weighing babies.
How Does Smoking Affect an Unborn Child?
Smoking can cause the narrowing down of the blood vessels which carry oxygen to the baby. The red blood cells are also further contaminated by carbon monoxide. This results in reduced oxygen supply to the unborn infant.
Why You Shouldn’t Smoke During Pregnancy?
Smoking during pregnancy can lead to the following complications for your unborn child:
- Restricts the growth and development of your baby
- Premature births
- Light and unhealthy baby
- Undersized baby
- Delayed lung development can keep babies on a respirator for days or weeks
- Smoking affects the brain development of the unborn child as well that can lead to learning disorders, low intellectual quotient, and other behavioral problems in the future
- Infants become more vulnerable to developing asthma and chest infections in adulthood
- Smoking increases your chances of miscarriage
- Increases the chances of deformities in your unborn child like a cleft palate or an oral cleft
Studies suggest that about 18% of the women smoke during pregnancy. Only about one out of the four of them quit smoking during pregnancy. About 20-30% of the babies weigh less due to smoking mothers, about 14% are premature births and 10% account for infant deaths. These statistics can very well explain why you shouldn’t smoke during pregnancy.