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Did you know?

Quitting smoking during pregnancy lowers the risk that a baby will be born too early.

Facts about quitting during pregnancy and staying quit after the baby is born:
  • Many pregnant women are tempted to cut down the number of cigarettes they smoke instead of quitting. Cutting down to less than 5 cigarettes a day can reduce risk, but quitting is the best thing she can do for herself and her baby.
  • It's never too late for a woman to quit smoking during pregnancy or after the baby is born.
  • During the first few weeks after quitting, cravings and withdrawal symptoms may be strongest. Women can reduce the length of each craving for a cigarette by distracting themselves (keeping their hands, mouth, and mind busy).
  • QuitlineNC is a free, confidential resource available to help anyone in North Carolina who would like personalized support as they quit smoking.
  • Withdrawal symptoms are often signs that their body is healing. They are normal, temporary, and will lessen in a couple of weeks.
  • Weight gain during pregnancy is normal. If a woman is worried about gaining weight when she quits smoking, pregnancy is an ideal time to quit. 
  • If a woman is worried about losing weight after she has the baby, help her focus on healthy activities that she can do to help lose weight, such as taking walks with her baby or eating more fruits and vegetables.
  • Many new mothers will experience the “baby blues.” They may feel sad and cry easily for a little while after they have a baby. Feeling down can make women want to go back to smoking. Finding other ways of coping during this time will help her and her baby stay healthy.
  • Some things you could do to help would be helping a new mom get out of the house at least once per day, helping her get as much rest as possible by assisting with chores and errands, and encouraging her to eat healthy foods.
  • Some mothers experience much stronger feelings. These moms may have postpartum depression. Postpartum depression happens more than most women know. In fact, one out of every ten new mothers has postpartum depression.
  • If your family member or friend seems to have one or more of the following symptoms, encourage her to call her health care provider as soon as she can:

    • Feeling really tired almost all the time
    • Feeling really worried
    • Crying all the time
    • Not being able to sleep even when the baby is asleep
    • Having scary thoughts