Pregnancy requires a woman to make major alterations to her lifestyle habits. One such change is “Quitting smoking”.
Smoking is injurious to the health of the mother and her unborn baby. When a pregnant woman smokes she exposes her baby to harmful toxins like nicotine and carbon monoxide. These substances in tobacco smoke restrict the supply of oxygen to the fetus through the blood and increase the heart rate. Not only this, they affect placental function and could result in preterm babies and low birth weight. Thus, it is necessary for pregnant women to give up smoking.
Many expectant mothers are ever willing to abstain from cigarettes for the sake of their little one. Doing so is not going to be very easy especially for women who have been smoking for many years but, it is also not impossible!
We’ve will help make this tough decision a fruitful one for you.
Accept your addiction
There are so many women who continue to light up despite knowing the potential hazards of smoking during pregnancy. Thus, your strongest point is to admit to your addiction. Only then will you be willing to give it up.
Commit, Set a Goal and Respect it
Chalk out a plan with the answers for “When” and “How’. Set a date on which you plan to stop smoking. Decide how you are going to do it- Cold Turkey or cutting back gradually. Let others know of your decision to give up smoking.
Don’t Lose Resolve
Pregnancy is already known to be a roller coaster ride. And the decision to give up smoking at this stage is going to make it a wee bit difficult. The withdrawal symptoms, the cravings and temptations, the restless feeling on smelling a whiff of smoke in the distance will compel you to go light up. But don’t lose resolve. Remind yourself why you are doing it.
Wean off Gradually
Some pregnant women choose to quit cold turkey. However, the sudden transition gets tough. Instead of giving up the habit or addiction abruptly, you can cut back gradually. Reduce the number of cigarettes you smoke every day. It makes it easier to lessen addiction by the time you reach your due date.
A Good support system can help you work through the toughest situations in life whether its de-addiction, a financial crisis or a serious illness. Enlisting the support and help of your spouse, parents, friends and family with double your chances for success. The positive vibes you receive will encourage and keep you motivated throughout this touch struggle. You can if you feel comfortable also join an online support group.
Consult Your Doctor
Whatever you do during those fragile nine months, should always be done with doctor’s permission and under his guidance. The first important thing is to tell the doctor that you smoke and are planning to quit. He will help determine the most effective strategies for you.
Many smokers who have quit smoking suggest replacing cigarettes with chewing gum. It keeps the mouth busy and distracts attention.
When the going gets tough, you may want to seek professional help. You can visit your local counselor. There are also many counselors, organizations and societies that offer counseling free of cost over the phone.
Many suggest Nicotine Replacement Therapy – nasal sprays, patches and gum. However, they contain nicotine too and may be equally harmful. Therefore, we do not recommend it for when already pregnant. You can definitely use this method to stop a smoking habit before you get pregnant.