How To Quit Smoking During Pregnancy
Now that you’re pregnant, it’s absolutely essential that you stop smoking. Not only do you not want your growing baby to be exposed to nicotine, you don’t want your baby to be greeted by cigarette smoke everyday of his or her new life. The safest ways to quit is cold turkey, which most people are unable to do. Although, there are many options available to help you quit like nicotine patches and and a drug called Bupropion (Zyban). The latter two options do not have any study data to dispute their safety to use during pregnancy, but it’s still always best to consult your obstetrician before you use them to quit smoking.
Know All Of Your Options
Nicotine Patches, gums and sprays are very effective in aiding your smoking cessation efforts. Both 18 hour patches and 24 hour nicotine patches deliver a dose of nicotine throughout the system that keeps the smoker from craving the nicotine from cigarettes. It’s not known if these patches affect a pregnant women, but it will affect her infant if she is breast feeding. If you choose to use nicotine patches, select the 18 hour patches rather than the 24 hour patches and wear them during the waking hours to limit the amount of nicotine of which you are exposed to during your pregnancy. If you use gums or sprays, do not overuse them, again to limit your baby’s exposure to nicotine. By using nicotine patches instead of quitting cold turkey, you boost your quitting success rate from 1 in 20, to 1 in 10.
Another Option To Consider
There’s another method that can be used to quit smoking during pregnancy, using Bupropion. Bupropion is considered safe for pregnant women, but no extensive studies have been made. First marketed as an antidepressant, it was discovered through the observation of Bupropion patients that it helped them quit smoking. Soon pregnant women were given the drug to facilitate smoking cessation. It also increases you quitting success rates to 1 in 10. This drug also passes through a mother’s breast milk, so it is not recommended for nursing mothers.
What Is The Cost?
The cost of the above listed cessation methods is minimal ($70-$160) compared to the health problems your child can suffer from if you continue to smoke during your pregnancy. Smoking increases the risk of babies being born with lower birth weight, cleft lips, undescended testicles, gastrointestinal abnormalities, closed anuses, heart defects and other body malformations. Don’t run that risk. You may not have planned your pregnancy and quit before getting pregnant, but now that you are with child, it is important for you baby’s health to stop smoking.