Smoking and Pregnancy

It’s never too late

Giving up smoking is one of the best things you and your partner can do if you are trying to start a family, whilst you are pregnant or when your child is born and the kids are young.

It’s a massive motivator

Finding out you are going to have a baby is one of the biggest triggers for parents-to-be to stop smoking.

Why giving up is good …

Planning for baby

  • Smoking damages sperm, reduces sperm count and because smoking interferes with blood circulation, can make it hard … to get hard
  • Women who smoke find it harder to get and stay pregnant with increased risk of bleeding, miscarriage and premature or stillbirth. This is because over 4,000 harmful chemicals in cigarettes go straight from your lungs into your bloodstream and then travel into your baby.

Pregnancy & child birth

As a mum-to-be, stopping smoking lowers your risk of deep vein thrombosis (DVT); miscarriage; premature birth and having a low birth weight baby; complications during pregnancy such as pre-eclampsia and bleeding after birth.

Don’t take our word for it, this video shows the advice of a midwife.

For baby

Carbon monoxide in cigarettes reduces baby’s oxygen supply. This means baby’s heart has to pump extra hard to get the oxygen that the brain and the body needs to develop physically and mentally.

…exposure to these poisons can last up to 15 minutes at a time. It’s like putting your baby in a smoke-filled room for 15 minutes.” (NHS Choices)

Babies born to mothers who smoke tend to experience both short and long term health problems and are more likely to have stays in hospital.

For a good night’s sleep!

If you’ve ever given up smoking you’ll know how difficult withdrawal can be.

Smoking during pregnancy means your baby will also go through nicotine withdrawal. Stressed and irritable, they will communicate their distress through crying – which means sleepless nights for everyone.

For your family’s future

If both you and your partner stop smoking for good, you are considerably reducing the chance that your baby will grow up to be a smoker in adolescence and into adulthood.

Giving up – together.

Pregnancy is the best time for you and your partner to stop smoking.  A smoke free home means no “second hand smoke” which can increase baby’s risk of asthma, respiratory and middle ear problems and meningitis.

Sign up to Bracknell Forest Stop Smoking Support here. If you are pregnant, make sure you talk with your doctor or midwife first.

Get additional information for parents to be from NHS Choices.  For more information on health concerns and more reasons to stop smoking, visit the NHS Smokefree website.