Our children are sacred. They represent our culture and way of life. They are our future. Pregnant women can protect our children by quitting tobacco before, during, and after pregnancy.
Dangers of Nicotine
Almost all commercial tobacco products—including cigarettes, vape, chew, and hookah—contain nicotine.
Nicotine is especially dangerous for pregnant women:
- It is highly addictive
- Disrupts the formation of brain circuits that control attention and learning
- Using nicotine—especially if you are under the age of 25—makes you more likely to become addicted
- Can increase blood pressure and heart rate causing arteries to stiffen up, which means a higher risk for things like heart attack
- Affects the way your body digests sugar (insulin resistance) and can increase your risk of Type 2 Diabetes
Nicotine can put your baby at risk:
- Nicotine can damage a baby’s brain as it grows in the womb
- Nicotine is toxic to a developing fetus
Dangers of Smoking While Pregnant
Smoking during pregnancy harms your baby
When you smoke, the chemicals and toxins in commercial tobacco products enter your body. Because you and your baby share the same bloodstream, deadly tobacco poisons in your system are shared with your baby.
Smoking can increase the risk of:
- Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)
- Premature birth
- Low birth weight
- Harm to baby’s lungs
- Birth defects like cleft lip or palate
Smoking before and during pregnancy causes health problems for mothers:
- Smoking makes it harder to get pregnant.
- Women who smoke during pregnancy are more likely to have a miscarriage.
- Smoking during pregnancy can cause the placenta (the source of baby’s food and oxygen) to separate from the womb too early, causing bleeding, which is dangerous to both mother and baby.
Dangers of Secondhand Smoke
When you smoke, so does your baby.
There is no safe level of exposure to secondhand smoke for pregnant women or anyone else. Infants and young children are especially vulnerable. Learn more about the health effects of secondhand smoke.
Firsthand, secondhand, and thirdhand smoke are all health hazards. The best way for us to avoid these dangers is to quit smoking and encourage those you love to quit, too.
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