Cigarette smoke isn’t just harmful to you, it harms your healthy baby too. Your baby is at risk when you smoke during pregnancy as well. Take the important step and stop smoking now.
Cigarette smoke contains poisonous chemicals such as carbon monoxide and ammonia, which are absorbed into the bloodstream. When a pregnant woman smokes, these chemicals pass from her bloodstream into the baby’s blood. However, if the mother quits smoking before becoming pregnant, the effects of smoking on the baby are reduced.
"I was smoking before I knew I was pregnant. How?" If you were smoking before you realised you were pregnant, focus on what you can do to improve the situation which is to quit smoking for good.
What happens when the mother decides to smoke during pregnancy? The most damaging effects of smoking happen from the fourth month to the ninth month of pregnancy, when the baby’s lungs are developing.
The health risks to your baby include:
There are many dangers associated with passive smoking too. Tobacco smoke is harmful to our health; remember that secondhand smoke—and even exposure to thirdhand smoke—can also cause harmful effects to a healthy baby.
Children in a home where one or both parents smoke are at risk of:
If you’re thinking of quitting, you’re taking an important step in the right direction. Try these strategies to make sure you stop smoking for good:
To find out more about the help available to quit smoking and for advice on what methods and strategies would suit you best, please contact QuitLine 1800 438 2000.
Visit Parent Hub, for more useful tips and guides for a healthy pregnancy.
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This article was last reviewed on
22 Nov 2023
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