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May-08-2008 10:39printcomments

Fewer Oregon Women Smoking While Pregnant

Women who smoke while pregnant are more likely to miscarry or have a still birth

Pregnant smoking
Photo courtesy: howstuffworks.com

(SALEM, Ore.) - Officials with the state say that since the beginning of Oregon's Tobacco Prevention and Education Program in 1996, the proportion of mothers who smoked while pregnant has decreased 30 percent. Because of this decrease in smoking, about 17,000 infants have had a healthier start to life.

"This decline in the number of moms smoking during their pregnancies is great news for Mother's Day," said Mel Kohn, M.D., state epidemiologist with the Oregon Department of Human Services Public Health Division.

"Mothers want to have healthier babies, and one of the most important things they can do for their children is to stop smoking."

Women who smoke while pregnant are more likely to miscarry or have a still birth. Infants born to mothers who smoke are more likely to be premature and low birthweight, which increases their risk of death and disease. Smoking while pregnant, and near a newborn, significantly increases the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).

"Although we have seen a steady decline in the number of women smoking while pregnant, there is still much to do," Kohn said. "Oregon's proportion of pregnant smokers is higher than the national average -- 12 percent compared with 10 percent nationally."

In 2005, 5,643 infants were born to Oregon mothers who used tobacco during pregnancy. Each of these pregnancies costs an average of $749 more than a birth to a non-smoking woman. Oregon's neonatal healthcare costs were increased by nearly $4.2 million in 2005 due to smoking during pregnancy.

"Quitting smoking is so important for moms and dads," Kohn said. "If you would like to quit smoking and improve the health of your family, there is no-cost, confidential help available at the Oregon Tobacco Quit Line. Call 800-QUIT-NOW for free coaching, tips, advice and medication."

Source: Oregon DHS news release




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Avera December 9, 2008 5:38 pm (Pacific time)

I was given the same information this article talks about, let me say right now I agree with the story...but I did my own survey, I did not smoke with my first pregnancy and my child was five pounds...with my second I smoked..and that child was over nine pounds...with my third I did not smoke...that child was five pounds...with my fourth I did smoke and that child was over ten pounds...so what now??? My sister did the same and she had similar results...so what now??? I have to say that the women who lost children durning pregnancy had to have had more underlying problems other than smoking while pregnant...also as to still birth I doubt that the smoking had much to do with it unless they are smoking a carton a day! Now why I do agree to not smoking while pregnant...it can and most likely will lead to hyperactive children...why I say this...the children I smoked while I was pregnant are hyperactive...a direct result of smoking while pregnant!!!! There is an increase of hyperactive children from my generation and that is due to the increase of women smoking! Do I smoke now...yes...am I trying to quit?? Yes I am..the bad thing about quiting for me is if an emotional problem comes up...I pick the darn things right up again!..So a word to the wise ladies...don't start if you have never smoked..and if you do quit now!!!!

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