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Smoking while pregnant

I smoked before getting pregnant maybe 25/30 a day. Since becoming pregnant i have cut back but i havent quit. This is my third baby and i have done the same with my other two. Who else has done this or who else has quit and how did u? I feel like i cant


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Answers (37)

I am an ex smoker, so I know how very hard it is to give up. I gave up using patches years before my babies were born. I cannot tell you how angry smoking mothers made me feel when my son who was born prematurely was in the nicu through no fault of my own. Lots of doctors and nurses asked me if I was a smoker and all seemed surprised when I said no because so very many babies in the nicu come from mothers who smoked during pregnancy.

And even having babies in the nicu wasn't enough to make many of these mothers quit because I'd see them at the front of the hospital smoking while their babies were up in that nicu. I'd by sitting next to my son's humid crib 10 hours a day watching him sleep, not wanting to miss an opportunity I might get to hold him, (and some days I was only allowed to touch him, and even then I'd get told off if I touched him too much) and sometimes days would pass before I got that chance.

And when it was time to go home every night, my husband would have to half carry me out of the hospital I'd be sobbing so much because another day I'd be leaving the hospital without my baby, and as we left we'd pass smoking mothers, and heavily pregnant women, and I just wanted to scream at them. Tell them how stupid they were, how if they didn't smoke then maybe their baby wouldn't be in the nicu.

Now, I know a lot of those feelings came from post natal hormones, and the stress of having a baby in the nicu. But my god, some of those babies were tiny. Some of those babies DIED and if that isn't enough to make you stop smoking then I dont know what is.

 I'm a nicu nurse . I'm not sure what your experience was and where that shaped that opinion- but I certainly wouldn't ask were you a smoker and be surprised and neither would anyone I work with because that is NOT such a common cause of premmies that it would lead to that automatic assumption and blame.

Op in saying that sometimes it can be a reason but in my midwife years Iv actually seen women walking outside for a smoke after induction so it goes both ways and if some of the risks haven't made you stop likely nothing will
I would just say keep it to amino mum try to skip days as often as possible try not to smoke fill cigarettes ect ect
Ovcourse it's better to quit but cutting back as best your can is next best thing
Good luck

helpful (4) 
 Well, it's not an opinion and I'm not making it up. I was asked many times, and a few nurses also told me that many of the babies were born to smoking mothers. Now, I know that no nurse should have told me that. I also know I was in a high state of distress the months my son was in the nicu and probably displacing some of that anger onto the smoking mothers, who quite frankly made me sick. But you cannot tell me that smoking does not significantly increase the risk of premature birth. And I can also tell you that there was a very high number of smoking mothers with babies in the nicu when my son was in there.
helpful (1) 
OP I had a cone biopsy on my cervix a few months before getting pregnant with my first. I found out at 26 weeks i was pregnant. Never had regular periods before hand so i didnt know i was. I had her at 34weeks. I know all about nicu. No one asked if i smoked at all there. I did tell them but they put it down to the biopsy cause my cervix wouldnt have been strong enough to carry to full term. My second bubs was a due date baby. Both now 7 &5 healthy happy kids. I do worry but from 25/30 a day to maybe 5/10 i feel is all i can do. I quit for 3 days when i found out thou. And some days i do only have half a smoke here and there. I just dont feel i can give up :-(
helpful (1) 
 Ok I'm telling you that "so many of the babies in nicu are there because of smoking mothers" is completely false. Not an opinion it was said as a statement- perhaps if you would have said when I was there most babies were there because of smoking mums it would have been your experience (which I still find hard to beleive you would know and the nicu nurses if they told you the cause of other babies have been absolutely reputable in their jobs and I would be LIVID it it was my staff who'd behaved that way)

It's a risk not a certainty. And there are more multiples in nicu. Women who had a second high risk pregnancy and delivered early, some for no reason at all. There's a complete mix of reasons babies end up there.

helpful (0) 
 nicu nurse, how would you know what was said to me, you weren't there. I don't appreciate being called a liar either. The fact is this is what nurses had told me. Perhaps they meant of the babies in the nicu at that time, many of the babies were from smoking mothers. And fri. What I saw, there were a lot of smoking mothers while my son was there. And actually, at that time most babies were not multiples. There were some but definitely not most. And I wasn't saying if you smoke then you WILL have a baby who will be underweight and end up in the nicu. I have friends who smoked throughout pregnancy and their babies were born fine. But the risk is much higher of that and other problems is it not? Were you a smoking other? Is this why you are downplaying the risk?
helpful (0) 
 No, it's funny you assume I must be a smoker just because I corrected something you either worded wrong and didn't mean it as a statement or made an incorrect statement.
And I was suppose to put a comma not a full stop as in multiples are just one of the reasons. Iv seen a fair few premmies babies that's to food poisoning- but I could make a general assumption you didn't avoid meat ?
If you read my comment again I actually said ovcourse it's better she quits...

helpful (0) 
 I didn't assume you were a smoker, I just asked if you were a smoker.
helpful (0) 

You are making your perfect, innocent little baby a smoker. That poor baby has no choice and that isn't fair. Get your act together and stop. I was a two pack a day smoker and as soon as I found out I was pregnant I stopped, no looking back. The health of my baby was my number one priority, being selfish wasn't a choice. Stop making excuses and STOP.

I was a pack a day, sometimes more but the minute I saw the two lines on my pregnancy test, That was it for me. I tried a farewell smoke, didn't even get half way through because I felt guilty that my innocent baby was exposed to poison. I didn't even have a single craving or relapse. I just didn't want it, my baby was more important. I haven't touched a cigarette since my 'farewell' attempt. You have to want to NOT smoke. Think about how unfair it is for your baby.

OP I do feel i think my baby is important clearly. I want to to stop but having found something that suits me to work. Thats why i am asking for suggestions
helpful (1) 
 This is amazing, YOU are amazing!! Huge kudos to you super mama xx
helpful (2) 

This is one of the most disturbing posts I have read on here and I hope it's a troll post.. :(

 Agree, all I see is a bunch of excuses and justifications. If your own CHILDS health wasn't enough to make you quit, then that is heartbreaking and scary.
helpful (1) 
 Exactly. :(
helpful (1) 

Im so sorry everyone is attacking you. Youve asked for help, not to say you love smoking. Its very hard to quit i understnd fully. Maybe speak to your OB or DR about getting some help.
Its not easy to admit these things and ask for help so well done. Ignore these nasty other nasty women. Xxx

OP I am a tough cookie i can ignore the negative people but thankyou for being supportive. Its not wasy admitting these things and asking for advice or help. My OB and doctor both are happy enough that i have cut back ideally would love me to quit but yeah.
helpful (1) 

I was a heavy smoker when I discovered I was pregnant with my first child. I gave up cold turkey as soon as I found out. I was a teenager living out of home with absolutely no support from my parents. I had an abusive boyfriend who continued to smoke throughout my pregnancy and still does to this day. I didn't think I was going to be able to give up but I just told myself it wasn't just about me anymore, I had a little baby that was 100% dependent on me. It was very hard, especially being around a smoker and having no support, but I did it. That baby is now 17 years old and I'm so glad I was able to quit. Op you say you have tried some of the things suggested to you. I don't know what to suggest to you but please please try to cut down and give up. I know it sounds trite but you really do just have to make yourself. I hope you go on to have a third healthy baby, but please please try. I have had several miscarriages since my first baby and I wouldn't wish that on anyone. Good luck!

Try cut down if you can't quit. I have been told that quitting can put a lot of stress on your body that is not good for the baby. I was also told that the effects of smoking were negligible if the mother was only smoking a few a day. Good luck.

Just try quitting one at a time, I quit before I got pregnant but each time I felt like smoking I would delay it by 5 mins, then told myself I survived that 5 mins do could do another 5 mins, then get distracted with something else and eventually cut down to only 1 or 2 a day, then figured if I can do only 1 or 2 a day then I don't really need it and can cut down to none. But don't think of it as permanent, just say that tomorrow you won't smoke, you get thru tomorrow, then do the same thing for the next day and before you know it it's been a week, then another week, then a month, then a year. Take one day at a time, everything that's worth it is hard, especially at first

 This a really good way to do it... Delay and distract yourself. Have you also tried ringing the Quit helpline??? Best of luck OP.
helpful (0) 

My stepmum cut down for her eldest and he was born 7 weeks premmie with clots in his kidneys. She quit as soon as she found out she was pregnant with her other 2 and went on to have 2 very healthy babies. None of them were planned so she didn't quit before hand for that reason. I've heard all sorts of things from "you have to quit cause the baby will be born with an addiction" to "if you quit while pregnant you are causing your body unnecessary stress and risking a miscarraige." I was fine cause I never smoked in the first place :)

OP Sorry to hear the eldest had problems. And im glad the other to were healthy. Do u know how she quit? The midwives are being supportive and i have tries a few things but it didnt work for long. I wish i never smoked in the first place. Would be a hell of a lot easier.
helpful (1) 
 She said that it was hard to start with, but, come second trimester, even being around other smokers made her feel sick. My partner is a month and a half smoke free using the champix tablets. I don't think you can take them while pregnant but. Good luck to you <3. Oh and my stepmums oldest is 14 now and very big for his age so, if it stunts their growth, it didn't do a very good job with him lol.
helpful (2) 

I found out i was pregnant and didn't touch one again!

I rang Quit ( They were really helpful. But at the end of the day you have to be ready and you have to want to quit. I didn't want to be a slave to my addiction constantly running around to satisfy it.

Having a conversation with my step mum the other day... she asks me if I worry about what I eat whilst being pregnant (like the seafood etc) whilst puffing on a smoke... she is also pregnant ... face palm!

Think mental images. Every time you puff on a cigarette, it's like a clamp going down on the umbilical cord and for that second you're taking a drag, your baby can't breathe. Imagine what is happenening to your baby for the 5-10 mins it takes you to smoke, however many times you smoke a day. At the other times you're not smoking, your baby is essentially breathing in poison; then think about all the stuff that it's cigarettes that your baby's teeny tiny body is absorbing. If these images don't help, then I would stop trying to find 'easy' ways to stop, I would try hypnotherapy or something else that has a higher success rate.