More On Smoking


Why should you avoid tobacco smoke if you are trying to become pregnant?

We have heard that babies who are born to mothers who smoke are at a greater risk of lower birthweights, birth defects and developmental delays….but how does tobacco impact women who are trying to conceive?

To begin with, the fetus starts to develop seventeen days after conception, and many women are not even aware they are pregnant at this point. After day seventeen the brain, central nervous system and other organs begin to develop. Since smoking increases the risk of problems for the baby, if you wait to stop smoking until after you are sure you are pregnant, the damage may have already occurred!

In terms of the impact of tobacco smoke on fertility, the chemicals in the tobacco can cause serious problems with the reproductive system. First, the carbon monoxide makes it hard for the blood to easily carry oxygen. When this happens, less oxygen reaches the reproductive organs. Also, the nicotine constricts blood vessels and causes a limited blood flow to the ovaries. Good blood flow is essential for the production of eggs for fertilization.

How about the placenta? Yep, the blood vessels of a woman who smokes can also affect her placenta. It doesn’t function as well and is ineffective in supplying oxygen and nutrients to the baby. When this happens, it can stunt the baby’s growth and result in low birthweight.

Definitely good reasons to stop smoking or convincing your spouse to stop smoking before you try to conceive. In fact, doctors recommend quitting at least 6 months before conception for a healthy pregnancy!

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Comments

smoking is bad 4 your health and if you want to have a baby your baby can be under weight and sick plus you can end up with copd my dad use to smoke ciggettes it did not kill him but now he has copd 4 the rest of his life and if you smoke and pregnant you can have a miscarage or still brith my moms a dr. I havent smoke ciggettes in 2 days i want to quit first then have a baby remember its not safe 4 u to smoke and its not go for the baby have any question ask me my mom knows she is the dr

Anonymous — Sep 29, 2009
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smoking is bad 4 your health and if you want to have a baby your baby can be under weight and sick plus you can end up with copd my dad use to smoke ciggettes it did not kill him but now he has copd 4 the rest of his life and if you smoke and pregnant you can have a miscarage or still brith my moms a dr. I havent smoke ciggettes in 2 days i want to quit first then have a baby remember its not safe 4 u to smoke and good 4 babys

Anonymous — Sep 29, 2009
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By TTC veteran and mother of two, Elizabeth Andrews.