Smoking during pregnancy exposes the child to carbon monoxide, which limits the supply of oxygen and nutrients. Exposure to nicotine increases the heart rate of the child and reduces its respiratory rate. Besides, specialists consider that mom’s smoking can alter fetus’s DNA, leading to malformations or developing of genetic maladies.
Problems caused by smoking during pregnancy
Smoking during pregnancy also causes other health problems such as:
- vaginal bleeding
- problems with the placenta, such as placenta previa (when the placenta partially or completely covers the cervix) or placental abruption (when the placenta separates the prematurely layer of the uterus before birth)
- low birth weight
- premature rupture of membranes – the membranes could break before the 37th week of pregnancy
- premature birth
- congenital abnormalities of the heart, limbs, skull, or muscles
Smoking during pregnancy can affect the baby’s health after his birth, increasing the risk of:
- sudden infant death syndrome
- respiratory infections
- obesity in children
Also, some studies have suggested a link between smoking mother and emotional development, baby’s behavior, and the child’s ability to learn. In addition, smoking during pregnancy may affect the fertility of the baby.
What are the risks of passive smoking during pregnancy?
If you inhale cigarette smoke when someone smokes in the room with you, your fetus’s health may also be affected.
Women who do not smoke but are exposed to cigarettes smoke have an increased risk of miscarriage or having a baby with birth malformations.
Will quitting smoking during pregnancy reduce the risks?
If you smoke, quitting smoking for the period you’re pregnant is the best option to give your baby the chance to have been 100% healthy.
If you give up smoking in the first four months of pregnancy, you’ll reduce your risk of having a baby with low weight.
Also, quitting smoking during pregnancy may reduce the risk of premature birth, miscarriage, newborn death, or other complications.
Reducing the number of cigarettes you smoke during pregnancy is an important step, but the complete cessation will have the greatest impact on both your health and your baby’s.
Mom’s Smoking Can Alter Fetus’s DNA
Smoking during pregnancy leads to chemical modification of the fetal DNA, which can have serious lasting effects on the child.
This is confirmed by an international study conducted on about 7,000 women from different countries and their children.
The study, which was published recently in a medical journal the United States, is one of the largest studies conducted on the subject.
It has been found that the chemical changes of the fetal DNA are similar to those seen in adult smokers, and in addition, scientists have identified the genes involved in the child’s development are affected by smoking.
Researchers were shocked to discover the same DNA modifications in the babies with smoker moms, as in the adult’s smokers DNA structure.
Many negative effects of smoking are transmitted to the babies through the blood and placenta, specialists said.
The researchers collected blood from the umbilical cord after childbirth, and for babies of mothers that smoke were identified over 6,000 places in which DNA was chemically modified.
Mom’s smoking can alter the fetus’s DNA and that’s proven by a clinical study. Every future mom should wish the best for the baby in her womb, even if that would mean to give up on smoking. A healthy baby is much more important than an unhealthy pleasure that smoking is.