If you are a patient, carer or member of the public who lives in Northamptonshire and are interested in supporting the work of NHS Nene CCG – why not become a member?
This would enable us to work together to develop new and improved health services for local people. Please complete our simple on-line application form here.
Smoking in pregnancy
Smoking while pregnant restricts the flow of oxygen to your unborn child, can cause breathing problems for you and your baby, and babies of smokers are more likely to be born premature and at a lower birth weight. Stopping smoking is the single best thing parents and parents-to-be can do to improve the health of themselves and their baby.
17 per cent of mothers in the UK continued to smoke throughout their pregnancy in 2005, and only 11% of the women who smoked during pregnancy had quit by the time their child was 9-12 months old.
Pregnant mothers who are 20 years of age or under are more than three times as likely to smoke before or during pregnancy as mothers aged 35 or over. They are also less likely to quit.
Mothers in routine and manual occupations were more than four times as likely as those in managerial and professional occupations to have smoked throughout pregnancy (29% and 7% respectively).
Smoking during pregnancy harms the mum-to-be
Placental complications - On average, smokers have more complications during pregnancy and labour. This can include bleeding during pregnancy, placental abruption and premature rupture of membranes 3. Women who stop smoking during the first three months of pregnancy have a lower rate of placental abruption and a lower rate of placenta praevia compared to continuing smokers
Eclampsia - Smokers are five times more likely to develop eclampsia.Eclampsia is a major cause of maternal mortality in the UK.
Miscarriage or stillbirth - Women who smoke are less likely to carry their babies to full term. There is a 27% greater risk that they will miscarry and smokers have a third higher risk of experiencing a stillbirth.
Smoking during pregnancy harms your baby in the womb from day one
Shortage of oxygen to baby - Cigarettes contain over 4,000 chemicals, including tar and carbon monoxide and 69 known human carcinogens. When a pregnant woman smokes, oxygen in her blood is replaced by carbon monoxide, depriving the baby of oxygen; this can affect the baby’s growth.
Breathing problems - Smoking during pregnancy damages a baby’s airways even before birth. Babies whose mothers smoke during pregnancy are born with smaller airways, making them more vulnerable to breathing problems. Research has shown airflow through the breathing tubes is on average 20% lower in babies born to smoking mothers.
Premature birth - Smokers are more likely to deliver babies prematurely before 34 weeks and at a much lower birth weight.
Smoking during pregnancy damages your child
Prone to infection -Babies of women who smoke during pregnancy are more likely to have extra problems in keeping warm. These babies are more prone to infection during and after labour.
Cot death - Smoking near children is a cause of cot death. The number of cot deaths could be reduced by almost two thirds if parents did not smoke.
Breathing problems - Children of parents who smoke are twice as likely to suffer from serious respiratory infection compared to the children of non-smokers. Smoking during pregnancy can also increase the risk of asthma in young children.
Smoking affects a woman's ability to conceive
The menopause occurs up to a year and a half earlier in smokers. The likelihood of an earlier menopause is related to the number of cigarettes smoked, with those smoking more than ten cigarettes a day having an increased risk of an early menopause.
One study found smokers were over three times more likely than non-smokers to have taken more than one year to conceive; the study estimated that the fertility of smoking women was 72% that of non-smokers.
Women who smoke have up to 4 times higher risk of developing cervical cancer than non-smokers; studies demonstrate that smoking is a causal factor in cervical cancer.
Smoking increases the risk of impotence in men
Cigarette smoking can affect male fertility: smokers’ spermatozoa has been found to be of decreased quality (count and motility) compared with that of non-smokers.
Smoking increases the risk of impotence by around 50% for men in their 30s and 40s.
ASH and the British Medical Association have calculated that around 120,000 UK men in this age group are needlessly impotent as a result of smoking.
Free NHS support to stop smoking in pregnancy
Stopping smoking is the single best thing parents and parents-to-be can do to improve the health of themselves and their baby. The good news is here in Northamptonshire we have a Stop Smoking Service, which includes Stop Smoking in Pregnancy Specialists.
Research has found that the main reasons smokers want to stop are: - Health concerns - Financial reasons - Family pressure - Harms children
NHS Northamptonshire Stop Smoking Service provides a tailored programme to encourage, motivate and support pregnant smokers and their families to stop smoking. One to one clinics are held in venues across the county in a confidential and non-judgmental setting with access to Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) that is safe to use during pregnancy and beyond.
For anyone interested in finding out more or making an appointment with one of our dedicated and friendly advisors can either:
- Contact their Midwife who will be happy to discuss and send a referral - Call the Stop Smoking Service directly on 0845 601 3116 - or visit www.goodbyesmoke.co.uk