Monday, March 26, 2012

10 Reasons to Avoid Smokers With Your Baby

Smoking is still a pretty big thing in our society despite the large number of people have quit or are in the process of quitting. It wasn’t that long ago that mothers could be seen smoking while feeding their babies or holding their child in one hand and holding a cigarette in the other. Through research and with the resulting onslaught of information regarding the damage smoking and inhaling secondhand smoke causes, life with cigarettes has changed dramatically in the last few decades. Here are some reasons you should not let your baby be around smokers.

  1. Smelly baby – Probably the least important reason but still applicable; babies are known for smelling so clean and fresh. The smell of cigarettes is potent, and clings to anything and everything it touches. You really don’t want your baby to smell like an ashtray do you?
  2. Fussy babies – It has been shown that infants do not do well in a smoke filled environment, and some studies have even correlated second hand smoke to a higher incidence of crankiness in babies. The smoke can irritate their lungs and eyes and make them uncomfortable.
  3. Asthma – Studies confirm that children raised around smokers have a higher incidence of asthma than those raised in environments with cleaner air. Also, children who are exposed to secondhand smoke may have more frequent and more severe asthma attacks.
  4. Poisons – Do you really want your baby breathing in all of those poisons? The fact is that secondhand smoke is full of irritants and chemicals that are harmful to the lungs. These chemicals include formaldehyde, arsenic, benzene, and vinyl chloride among others. Since babies have such small and delicate lungs that are still in the process of developing they are more vulnerable to the ill effects of these poisons.
  5. Cancer – Research shows that second hand smoke can be just as harmful as smoking. In some cases, people who never smoked but were around smokers came down with cancer while the smoker remained relatively healthy. Secondhand smoke is a known human carcinogen containing a plethora of carcinogenic chemicals; chemicals your baby does not need to be breathing.
  6. Lung damage – Recent studies reveal that babies who are subjected to secondhand smoke incur damage to their developing lungs which are quite possibly permanent damages. Their lung function decreases which can make them more susceptible to respiratory problems
  7. Ear infections – The adverse effects aren’t limited to the lungs; in fact inhalation of secondhand smoke can cause fluid buildup in the ears resulting in ear infections.
  8. Bronchitis – This is another respiratory issue that is seen more frequently in babies exposed to secondhand smoke.
  9. Pneumonia – Babies breathing in smoke are more likely to come down with pneumonia than those in a clean air environment.
  10. SIDS – One of the most frightening reasons to keep baby out of a smoke filled environment is that infants exposed to secondhand smoke are up to four times more likely to die of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.

By now most people should know that smoking around babies and children compromises the health of the child. Babies are still developing vital systems in their bodies and the toxins found in secondhand smoke can inhibit or alter growth patterns or cause systems to malfunction. Healthy babies require healthy environments, so make sure your baby’s air is smoke free.

Taken From Newborn Care

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