Quit Smoking for Mom & Baby (Infographic)

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

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Quit for You. Quit for Two.

Quitting smoking before or during pregnancy is one of the most important steps you can take to increase your baby’s chances of a healthy lifetime. It’s never too late to quit.

Plan Ahead for a Healthy Pregnancy

Women who smoke may have a harder time getting pregnant. If you do become pregnant, smoking increases your chance of many serious pregnancy complications, including:

  • Miscarriage (loss of the pregnancy)

  • Ectopic pregnancy (a dangerous condition when the embryo implants outside the uterus)

Benefits for Baby

  • Less risk of being born too early

  • More chance of not being born with serious birth defects, such as a cleft lip or cleft palate

  • More likely to be born at a healthy weight (more than 5½ pounds) and grow on track

  • More likely to have normal brain development during two important times—before birth and through early childhood

You Can Cut the Chemicals

Cigarette smoke has more than 4,000 chemicals. Smoking during pregnancy means these chemicals are harming you and hurting your baby’s health and development.

Lead – toxic (poisonous) metal
Ammonia -- in cleaning products
Butane – in lighter fluid
Chromium – used to make steel
Carbon monoxide – in car exhaust
Cyanide – in chemical weapons
Polonium – includes radioactive material
Formaldehyde – industrial chemical

Have a Happy Birth Day

  • Quitting smoking lowers your chances of bleeding too much during delivery. This makes delivery safer for you and your baby.

  • Smoking during pregnancy increases your chance of going into labor early and having a small, under-weight baby.

  • Labor can put more stress on a smaller, under-weight baby. Smaller babies also may have more serious health problems.

  • If your baby is too small or needs care for health problems, he or she may have to stay longer in the hospital until healthy enough to go home.

Welcome Home

Once your baby is here, staying smokefree is just as important for your baby and you.

  • Babies born to moms who smoke during or after pregnancy are 2–3 times more likely to die from SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome).

  • Now is a good time to set smokefree rules for your home and car. Protect your baby from secondhand smoke.

A Healthy Start to a Healthier Life

Babies and young children who are NOT exposed to smoke typically have:

  • Fewer coughs and chest colds

  • Lower chance of getting bronchitis or pneumonia

  • Fewer ear infections

  • Less frequent and less severe asthma, if they have asthma

Older children who are NOT exposed to secondhand smoke:

  • Miss fewer days of school because of asthma attacks and respiratory (breathing) illnesses

  • Are less likely to be smokers as adults

How Does Your State Rate?

On average, 10% of women smoke during pregnancy.

Rates of smoking during pregnancy are highest in West Virginia (27%), Kentucky (21%), Wyoming (17%), Missouri (17%), and Ohio (16%).

Are You Covered?

Check your insurance plan. Many insurance plans cover quit smoking support for pregnant women.

Free, No-judgment Support

  • Sign up online for text messaging program SmokefreeMOM or text MOM to 222888.

  • Call 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669) 24/7 for information and tips on quitting smoking.

  • Chat with a quit smoking counselor at LiveHelp (livehelp.cancer.gov). Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. eastern time. Also in Spanish.

A Healthy Start Can Begin Now

Your life as a smokefree mom might hit some rough patches. You might slip and smoke a cigarette or even go back to smoking after your baby is born. If that happens, it’s important to get back on track as soon as you can.

Explore all the tips and tools at women.smokefree.gov to help you stay smokefree.


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Quit Guide

From those of us at Smokefree Women…Congratulations! You are taking the first step towards a healthier, new lifestyle.

Start Today
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Having a Baby?

SmokefreeMOM is a text messaging program that provides quitting tips and encouragement.

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Our Tools

The Smokefree Women Web site includes a variety of interactive tools to help you quit smoking.