Stopping smoking is no easier for pregnant women than anyone else. In Swindon last year nearly 15% of women continued to smoke throughout their pregnancy (that’s 3 out of 20 pregnant women).Smoking during pregnancy means the baby shares chemicals from the smoke that the mother inhales. Chemicals from the smoke, such as carbon monoxide are absorbed into the blood stream and can restrict the oxygen that is essential for baby’s healthy growth and development. Because cigarettes restrict the baby’s oxygen supply, their tiny heart has to beat harder every minute the mother smokes.
In Swindon a new ‘Stop Before you Drop’ service has been launched that helps pregnant women in Swindon who want to stop smoking.
Lisa Fendall, who was featured recently in the BBC “Mums Behaving Badly” series, launched the new service in Swindon, highlighting the risks of low weight, weak babies, as a result of smoking in pregnancy, and the importance of supporting pregnant women to quit smoking.
Each Thursday, there is a dedicated ‘Stop Before You Drop’ group at the John Moulton Hall, Penhill, Swindon from 10:30 to 11:30. It is just for pregnant women who want to quit smoking, and provides an opportunity for them to talk to other pregnant women who are also trying to stop, as well as having a trained stop smoking advisor available to offer support and advice.
Women can either turn up on the day or call 0800 389 2229 (Swindon Freephone number) for more information.
Cherry Jones, Deputy Director of Public Health for NHS Swindon commented “this new service provides a great opportunity for pregnant women to meet others in a similar situation. Stopping smoking is the single most important thing anyone can do to improve their health, and for a pregnant women there is also the health of her baby.’’