Here’s what smoking and drinking moderately while pregnant can do to your baby

Do you know that smoking and drinking once in a while while pregnant can be harmful too? Here’s how you’re risking your baby’s health.
smoking and pregnant women
Give up smoking! Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Shifa Khan Published: 12 Jan 2022, 20:07 pm IST
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You may feel an urge to sip a glass of wine or take a puff of cigarette to calm your social life’s FOMO. However, this practice has the potential to jeopardise your baby’s health when pregnant. If you don’t know this number one rule of pregnancy, you may be living under a rock! The highly advocated and embraced rule of pregnancy is to ditch the smoke and quit alcohol.

Smoking creates a great risk for infants. You and your baby’s life can be put in immense danger, even if you are regularly exposed to passive smoke. This dangerous habit can contribute to sudden infant death syndrome in babies.

Quitting smoking is essential for your baby to avoid miscarriage. It can also lead to birth defects like a cleft lip or cleft palate, premature birth, low birth weight, and infant death. Furthermore, e-cigarettes are also not safe during pregnancy, so make sure to avoid them.

Follow expert advice to take the best possible care of your baby. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Plus, if you’re opting for alcohol during the first three months of pregnancy, it is detrimental to your baby’s health. It can interfere with the fetal development stages and cause problems.

Dr. Sunitha Mahesh, Senior Consultant, Feto Maternal Medicine and Medical Director, Milann Fertility and Birthing Hospital, JP Nagar, Bengaluru, spoke to HealthShots about any exception in this pregnancy rule.

Here’s what the experts say on smoking and drinking in pregnancy

“The most important trimester where maximum development of the foetus occurs is the first trimester. The mother has to pay special attention to make sure that there are no abnormalities in the foetus. In addition, they should focus on their health to be able to carry on the pregnancy and deliver a healthy baby.” says Dr Mahesh.

“As for the outcome of pregnancy, having a healthy mother and healthy baby should be a motto for all pregnancy. Drinking alcohol during pregnancy is considered to have some serious adverse foetal development problems and is not considered to be safe,” adds Dr Mahesh.

travel during pregnancy
Quit the smoke and keep that wine glass away while pregnant. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

3 things that can happen to your baby even if you drink and smoke moderately:

  1. Drinking alcohol can cause foetal alcohol syndrome (FAS), a serious condition that can affect your child throughout life. Excessive alcohol consumption can result in multiple organ damage, which can be dangerous for your baby. 
  2. Smoking is also not considered to be safe during pregnancy. Whether passive or active, it is considered to be harmful. Serious consequences of it could include foetal growth restriction, preterm labour and consequences of abnormal placentation.
  3. If you’re indulging in alcoholic drinks and smoking even moderately, it can result in severe respiratory issues, asthma, and even sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). 

The takeaway

Having healthy lifestyle practices is always recommended for all pregnant mothers. With a little extra care and precaution, you can greatly enhance your chances of being a healthy mother to a healthy child. Quit the smoke and keep that wine away! 

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About the Author

An aesthete and a skincare junkie, Shifa spends most of her time cooking delish food while wearing a sheet mask. At HealthShots, she creates high-octane content that can leave you all a little intrigued! ...Read More

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