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Smoking and Pregnancy


Smoking and Pregnancy ó The Risks You Should Know About

When you are pregnant it is of utmost importance to eat a healthy diet, get plenty of exercise, and avoid any activities that might cause harm to your unborn child. Cigarette smoking is one activity that can really affect your health and cause birth defects and other disorders in your unborn child so it should be avoided at all costs. Frequent problems children of maternal smokers experience include ADD and hyperactivity as well as low test scores.

Maternal Smoking and ADD

There are many poisonous agents in cigarettes and the more a mother-to-be smokes the more she is poisoning her baby. Research shows that the more a women smokes cigarettes during pregnancy the more carbon monoxide is stored in the developing babyís blood stream. When there is a large accumulation of carbon monoxide in the babyís blood stream oxygen levels are not as high in the developing child and this can cause serious development problems.

One problem that most often occurs in developing infants of smoking mothers is ADD, or attention deficit disorder. Also, as the mother continues to smoke and expose her child to smoke after birth the child may still develop disorders.

Maternal Smoking and Low Test Scores

A study of 9000 children in Britain revealed the serious side effects smoking in pregnancy has on a developing infant. The study measured whether mothers-to-be smoked 0, 10, or more than 10 cigarettes per day while pregnant. Those women who smoked more than 10 cigarettes per day while pregnant had children with developmental delays. For example, the children tested of mothers that smoked in pregnancy were about 5 months behind in math, reading, and measurements as opposed to other children. Additionally, the children of smokers were 1 centimeter shorter than non-smokersí children. These are significant differences that really should be considered by women who smoke.

Of course, these are not all of the things that might occur in your child if you choose to smoke during pregnancy. In fact, these are just two common outcomes, however there are really many, many more. Some children experience auditory problems, developmental delays, brain cells are damaged, asthma, as well as other problems. So, if you are a smoker consider quitting before you become pregnant. It is the best thing you can do for the health of your child. However, if you donít quit smoking do your best to cut back on cigarettes each day because it has been shown the more a fetus is exposed to cigarette smoke the worse the damages. As a result, you can minimize the damage of cigarette smoke by smoking less. Despite this, quitting smoking altogether is the only way to ensure your baby wonít suffer and that is worth the effort.

If you need some more information about smoking during the pregnancy period, we suggest that you have a look at smoking and pregnancy page. [an error occurred while processing this directive]