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Stress and Smoking during pregnancy??

(26 Posts)
Flowerydems Mon 18-Apr-11 13:18:35

I know I'm not meant to but I'll hold my hands up and say I'm struggling not to smoke during pregnancy. I'm not having many (but I never really did smoke more than 10 a day before). I've not had one drink since I found out but have smoked a couple most working days (i have never smoked much at home) I'm just starting to freak out about how this is going to affect my baby now.

I'm always stressed thinking about how this and other genetic factors will affect my baby and the more I fixate and stress about it the more I want a cigarette and then I give in and the cycle goes round again and again.

My DP is really disappointed in me and I just don't know what to do now

theonlyhb2 Mon 18-Apr-11 13:30:22

i think at some point, you will just stop. Its so hard when you know you have to though!

Stress is the worst though, and I think if I am happy then my baby is happy. Just don't increase what you are smoking, cut it down and over time you will cut it out completely.

TeacupTempest Mon 18-Apr-11 13:53:36

I used to smoke 30 a day. Read Allen Carr's how to give up smoking book and that was that! I had tried every other method before and was very sceptical but I worked. Can't recommend it enough. Worth a go?

rainbowinthesky Mon 18-Apr-11 13:54:54

Have you sought professional help? I should imagine there would be loads out there for you.

Flowerydems Mon 18-Apr-11 13:56:58

But is it too late to stop? Just keep worrying about the damage I might have already caused and I'm already 10+6

Sorry I'm quite an anxious person anyway as you can probably tell.

Flower1000 Mon 18-Apr-11 13:57:55

Firstly go and see your gp, i was given nicotine patches whilst PG.

I hate to say it tho, and I will prob get flamed for this, but my MW actually said that if I could stick to 1 or 2 a day, then I shouldn't worry too much about it. She said the stress I was putting myself under by not smoking was prob worse for the baby than if I had a couple of ciggies a day. I found that as long as I knew I could have one in the morning, and one before bed I could actually handle not smoking during the day. Take them away from me completely and I lost it!!

Whatevs Mon 18-Apr-11 13:58:09

1) Buy Allen Carr now and read it asap.
2) See your GP/midwife and book in to your local smoking cessation clinic.
3) In the meantime, cut down to the least amount you can possibly cope with.

You don't need us to tell you that smoking while pregnant is a bad idea. By any means necessary, give up!

(p.s I am an ex smoker and in no way judging you - just think you need to take the bull by the horns and get some practical help with your addiction. tough love etc)

Good luck!

Whatevs Mon 18-Apr-11 14:00:33

It isn't too late to stop. Of course not! I didn't even know I was pregnant with my first until into the second month and was drinking like a fish and smoking 20 a day.

It is never too late. Just think, if you gave up successfully in the next few weeks, you would be a seasoned non-smoker by the time your baby comes along. Massive benefits to your health and your childs.

winnybella Mon 18-Apr-11 14:01:44

No, it's definitely not too late smile
Just to make you feel better, I've met quite a few of doctors who don't think that smoking less than 5 a day will have a great impact on baby-mind you, I'm sure it's way better not to smoke, obviously, but a couple a day are probably not enough to do any serious damage. But it's not only a serious damage you worry about, is it, and of course you want your pg to be as healthy as possible. I've heard great stuff about A. Carr book as well.

lilly13 Mon 18-Apr-11 14:11:36

please please read Allen Carr asap and listen to the CD. you must quit asap. i quit a couple of years before pregnancy and i know how hard it is to do so even if you smoke a little bit, but Allen Carr book really did a miracle for me. I hope you can do this asap. If you have the means and are in London, you can try hypnotherapy at harley street (for gbp350 or so, you'll quite in 2 sessions - i haven't tried myself, but that was on my to do if Allen Carr were to fail)... good luck! you can do it!

luluzulu Mon 18-Apr-11 19:41:36

it took me months to give up i was having 1 per day and i just thaught how pointless is this? i was having half a ciggie then stumping it out with worry, it helps that i'd already cut down to 2 per day before finding out i was i have been completely smoke free for about 2 months. its hard but worth it and when you feel your baby getting bigger and kicks getting stronger it will probs be enough to help you kick the habit.....good luck!!

WidowWadman Mon 18-Apr-11 20:24:09

Personally I found Allan Carr pants. NHS offers a lot of good stop smoking advice and help, so I'd check with your midwife, I'm sure she can either provide some help herself or refer you to the right people

(I have to admit though that I didn't manage to quit during my first pregnancy, I kept it to less than 5 a day, but despite all the guilt never managed to stop until the day my daughter was born. God knows what happened, but I haven't touched a cigarette since)

Sidge Mon 18-Apr-11 20:30:28

Anyone that tells you that smoking doesn't harm a foetus, or that the stress of not smoking is more harmful to the baby is talking bollocks.

The reality is is that smoking is bad for you and bad for your developing baby. The lungs are very vulnerable to damage in utero and research now suggests that maternal smoking can actually be a factor in an adult developing COPD in their forties and fifties!

When you smoke you inhale carbon monoxide, which blocks the red blood cells in your blood from being able to carry oxygen. Your developing baby relies on your well-oxygenated blood to deliver all it needs via the placenta.

So that's all the bad news, what's the good news? The good news is it's never too late to quit, and also nicotine replacement therapy is licensed for use in pregnancy. There should be a service in your area to support pregnant women to quit smoking, ask your midwife. If there isn't, see your GP or practice nurse.

You CAN quit and now you have the best incentive in the world. Good luck!

BatFlattery Mon 18-Apr-11 21:39:36

It's never too late to give up! I smoked around 15 a day until I found out I was pregnant, struggled to give up straight away, but at around 7 weeks something just 'clicked' and I just didn't bother with it any more (cut right down to a couple a day before that). My best advice is just to take it one cigarette at a time - don't think OMG, I'll never smoke again, just think very very short term. Every cigarette you don't smoke is a bonus to your baby.

Good luck smile

Newmummytobe79 Tue 19-Apr-11 08:56:54

I was the same as you - I smoked under 10 a day and then when I found out I was pregnant I managed to cut down to 1/2 - 1 a day. My midwife told me I was doing really well and that at 12 weeks, my scan picture would stop me ... and it did! Everytime you want one - just have a look at your little baby and it will stop you. I'm not saying the craving will go away - I'm really struggling at the moment - especially with the sunshine and busy beer gardens! But I'm doing well resisting! I hate the fact that I keep thinking I'll be able to smoke again soon - and I'm hoping I won't! But as the others say - just take it one day at a time and don't beat yourself up if you have a slip up. I promise your scan picture will help! x

8rubberduckies Tue 19-Apr-11 11:42:44

I smoked 15+ a day until I found out I was pg, then cut down for a couple of weeks and then stopped. It was really difficult, but I am glad I did it. I don't think it is ever too late to stop, even though cutting down is better than nothing.

The NHS quit-smoking website has a dedicated section for Mums to be, and also a dedicated helpline number to call. I rang them and found them very helpful, encouraging and most importantly non-judgmental, which is what you need at the moment. They put me in touch with a smoking cessation nurse who was able to visit me at home if I wanted and talk through a plan to stop. I didn't see her in the end as I managed to stop before our scheduled appointment, but it was good to know she was available on the end of the phone if I needed her.

Good luck!

Poppet45 Tue 19-Apr-11 13:47:24

I was a smoker when I found out I was epecting DS (not literally over the test itself, you understand grin) and I did need to have one last day of smoking three or four goodbye cigs to end the habit for my pregnancy and then for the 19 months I BFed my son. I'm now pregnant again and have probably had 10 cigs in total since my first pregnancy two years ago on random naughty nights out when I knew i wouldn't be feeding him for at least 6-8 hours. It's not too late to quit - it's a perfect lesson in how doing the right thing for your child can, and frequently will, be hard for you. Welcome to motherhood.
I don't buy the happy mummy happy child mantra - because that line's a cop out that could be used to justify all sorts of utterly selfish behaviour, like leaving a baby to cry at night if you're tired, getting pished, leaving them home alone while you go out with your mates, at what point does a happy mummy stop meaning a happy child? How precisely is you smoking making your child happy right now?
Ditto, I know it's hard to hear, but the stress of you quitting isn't going to cause a fraction of the harm to your child as you keeping smoking will. You just think it will as part of your fear of quitting. I've been there. Put it this way, can you imagine you and your partner having words or a similarly stressful situation with the baby in the room once it's born? Of course you can, we're all used to low level stress of one type or another. Can you imagine either of you walking up to the child in its cot, putting a ciggie in its mouth and lighting it? Of course not, it's monstrous.
Call your midwife and talk to her - she won't judge you - this is honestly, honestly such a common problem for pregnant women, and you'll never have more support for quitting. Good luck.

LaWeasel Tue 19-Apr-11 14:02:47

I'm not a smoker, but just wanted to say, while you are struggling if you eat the healthiest diet you possibly can this will be really helpful in making your body as fit as possible despite the smoking.

Also - saw a thread recently about how helpful some people found fake electric cigarettes whilte trying to quit. Because it's something to hold and suck on when you are really stressed - which it sounds like you are!

I think you are doing really well so far, and I'm sure with a bit of help and encouragement you can do it. Concentrate on all the fags you wanted but haven't smoked and take pride in those.

flamegirl77 Thu 21-Apr-11 06:37:20

Well done for cutting down. That's an achievement in itself and you should tell your DP so and ask him to be positive and encourage you, rather than judging you. Does he smoke? If so he needs to cut it out when he's around you. If not, he needs to have some empathy. Giving up smoking is really hard and his disapproval of you isn't going to make it any easier. Good luck and congratulations on your pregnancy!

pinkytheshrinky Thu 21-Apr-11 06:48:43

Read Allen Carr - and please stop.

BabyBorn Thu 21-Apr-11 09:42:43

Your original post sounded like me 7 years ago. Unfortunatley, i couldnt stop. I did cut down to 3 cigarettes a day, and i used to mentally beat myself up for it. I didnt feel i had any help or support from my midwife at the time (i was 19) and it was a vicious circle. I used to think about it EVERY day throughout the whole of my pregnancy, and requested growth scans all the way through as i panicked my DD would be tiny because of my smoking.

I am glad to say that i am TTC at the moment and have stopped now for 3 weeks so far. I had the strength to do this as i didnt want to put myself and a child through the stress and harmful toxins that i would be inhaling during pregnancy. 7 years on i am alot stronger than the last time, and i had wanted to quit not for me, but for a very much wanted pregnancy i hope will happen soon.

It is very difficult to stop, but if you are lucky enough to get the help and support i would stop if i were you. I sympathise though as i found it extremley difficult the first time around. You have to remember this isnt about you anymore, its about a living being growing inside you, you have to keep reminding yourself of that.

All the best of luck xx

LaWeasel Thu 21-Apr-11 10:52:58

this was the thread with the electronic fags

EricNorthmansMistress Thu 21-Apr-11 11:01:16

Read Allen Carr - it worked for me, two months fag free

Re stress- Allen Carr discusses this a bit. It makes me a bit cross when people quote the 'the stress of quitting is worse for the baby' line. NO it's not. Nicotine addiction is real, but extremely mild. Withdrawal from nicotine is not painful or harmful. If your mind says you do not want one then it's incredibly easy to ignore a craving. If your mind says you do want one it's nigh on impossible. However your body is under no physical stress as you withdraw from nicotine. Psychologically you might feel stressed but no more than normal life stresses and nobody ever says 'don't drive while pregnant, don't have a row with your DP while pregnant, don't try to fill in a tax credit form while pregnant' - all of those cause at least as much stress as craving a cigarette

It's not too late for you to fix this. Buy the AC book and get stuck in. I personally know lots of people who have stopped with just the aid of this book, it truly is easy and painless, all you need is a desire to stop.

The desire should be there - you are raising the risk of premature birth, breathing difficulties and cot death. So there is your motivation - the AC book is the tool you need. Go buy it today - trust me it will be worth it.

jabbsy74 Fri 05-Jun-15 09:14:00

before pregnancy, i smoked under 10 a day. now im pregnant, i was smoking probably around 1 cig a day - my partner smokes, i just used to light his for him and pass it on, steal it back for a quick drag.... i know its bad and i know its awful and theres people out there would kill to be in my position so i should be doing all i can to stop..... i know all this, but still find the temptation to take a drag overwhelming. anyway, partners mum is now in hospital with smoking induced lung infection and will be coming to stay with us after she gets out.... so ive decided we are now a cigarette free house - he can go outside to smoke. am hoping this will stamp out the drag or two i do still take.

one story that did really put me off, rather than patronising people giving it all their wankytalk, friend told me a friend of a friend story.....

her umbilical chord when the baby was born was long and thick and red and purple, glorious colours and the midwives/doctors etc commented on how very wonderful and healthy and beautifully impressive it was.
another friends umbilical chord was short, skinny, stubby and brown.... the friend had continued with her 20 a day smoking habit

i dunno, that story now stays with me whenever i light up for partner and definitely stops me taking it back for another.... i cant quite knock on the head the lighting it in the first place but am confident i will eventually.

lets face it, anything anyone tells you doesnt work, if anything, the patronising talk makes you smoke to be spiteful..... but the visual aspect of that friend of a friend story, it really stuck with me. maybe it will stick with someone reading too.

MissTwister Fri 05-Jun-15 12:17:03

This thread is from 2011 so a bit out of date...

What do you mean you smoke to be spiteful - to the baby?

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