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Effects of tobacco on pregnancy

by Alivia Nyhan
Published: Last Updated on

Many women have the habit of smoking, and it is estimated that 30% of pregnant women continue with this bad habit. This can have significant consequences for both mother and baby. Expert gynecologists say that smoking during pregnancy is the first cause of children born with different problems. This is because the carbon monoxide and the nicotine in the smoke that comes from tobacco can influence the supply of oxygen to the fetus and cause significant complications.

Pregnancy is a very delicate stage, which must be controlled regularly by a doctor to ensure a healthy baby and mother for nine months. However, for this, the woman must remove some bad habits from her life, such as smoking. On this occasion, at FastlyHealwe want you to know the effects of tobacco on pregnancy to become aware of and eliminate smoking, at least during this period.

Baby’s weight and size

The weight and size of the child in women who have used tobacco during pregnancy are significantly lower, approximately between 150 and 458 grams less, than in those women who have not continued with this habit at any time during the nine months.

This lower weight is considered in all the body dimensions of the child, such as height, skull size, and thoracic perimeters. The delay in development that occurs inside the uterus is due to the interference of the components of tobacco, mainly nicotine and carbon monoxide, which prevent the correct supply of nutrients and oxygen, in addition to the entry of toxins into the fetal system, with the probability of generating numerous consequences for the product throughout its life.

Spontaneous abortion

Some specialists claim that pregnant smokers have a much lower female sex steroid hormone level, called estradiol. In contrast, others argue that there is not such a significant difference between the values ​​of a pregnant smoker and a pregnant woman without this habit. However, all agree that there is an alteration in the ovum and an increase in prostaglandins that can lead to spontaneous abortion.

This can easily be seen in numerous studies that establish a statistically significant between tobacco use during the gestation period and existing miscarriage rates. In addition, a strong relationship between the dose consumed and the response has been confirmed; that is, the greater the amount of tobacco, the more likely this will happen.

Previous placenta

Placenta previa is another of the effects of tobacco in pregnancy. It is a disorder that occurs during pregnancy, in which the placenta grows in the wrong place, in the lower part of the uterus, and covers the entire opening to the cervix or part of it. As the placenta grows throughout pregnancy and the cervix is ​​the opening for childbirth, those women with placenta previa may have complications when giving birth. We will be talking about another of the effects of smoking in pregnancy.

Placenta previa can also originate as a result of the abnormal increase in the size of the placenta; this alteration occurs to compensate for the insufficiency of oxygen, caused by substances such as nicotine, carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxide, and hydrocyanic acid, which reaches the fetus in women who continue with the habit of smoking. However, it will also depend on the dose and how often it is done.

Impaired lung and brain function

In several studies, it has been shown that for those mothers who have used tobacco while they were in the pregnancy stage, their children have a deficiency in the respiratory system that can become serious over the years. In addition, children may have learning disorders, a lower mental coefficient than the rest, and behavior problems. Therefore, the production of an alteration in lung and brain function is another of the effects of tobacco during pregnancy.

Although the possibility that these alterations in the fetus are due to various interventions of the components of tobacco, the modification of genes related to the development of the lungs and the nervous system has been observed; that is, they lead to the addition of a chemical group were not applicable. They also stimulate the release of the hormone cortisol from the smoking mother in high amounts and come into prolonged contact with the fetus through amniotic fluid, which among its effects is the accelerated maturation of the lungs and decreases the number of alveoli. At the same time, in the nervous system, it can reduce head circumference and generate a degenerative neuronal effect.

Sudden death and congenital malformations

Women who are pregnant and continue to smoke have a much higher percentage of their babies suffering from sudden death than women who have not used tobacco during the nine months of gestation.

In addition, the nicotine of cigarettes in the blood can cause congenital malformations, for example, alterations in the hips, bones, and mouth, among others. This is why it is advisable not only to avoid smoking during pregnancy but also to stay away from those who do it to avoid being a passive smoker since smoke contains approximately 2,500 chemicals.

Some tips for quitting smoking

To start a healthier life without tobacco, you need:

  • Set a date and stick with it.
  • Quit smoking entirely and never touch any cigarettes again.
  • Do moderate exercise and always stay active.
  • Drink plenty of fluids.
  • Eat fruit or chew gum when you feel like smoking.

These articles can help you quit smoking:

This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar on the Effects of tobacco on pregnancy, we recommend that you enter our Pregnancy and baby health category .

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