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Smoking after Giving Birth

​​​​​​​​picture of baby breastfeedingMany women make ch​anges in their lives when they are pregnant. For example, a lot of women will eat more vegetables, take vitamins and reduce or quit smoking. After giving birth, a lot happens in a woman's life that can make it challenging to maintain some of the changes made during pregnancy. ​​

Some women who have reduced or quit smoking during their pregnancy feel urges to smoke after they give birth. 

Here are some reasons why cravings for cigarettes can be stronger after giving birth:
  • If you quit for the pregnancy, you may feel that you have reached your goal and that you can start smoking again.
  • Being with people or in places that you haven't been to since before you were pregnant can trigger cravings.
  • Caring for a newborn baby and other major life changes can cause stress that triggers smoking.  
  • Some women may want to have a cigarette as a reward for not smoking during their pregnancy. 

You can read more about Dealing with Triggers and Cues to learn how to have power and control over the urge to smoke.

​Some women decide to quit or reduce smoking while pregnant, but it's important to remember that smoking affects the baby after birth too. Some ways smoking can affect the baby are:
  • Secondh​and smoke 
  • Third hand smoke (smoke on clothes, skin and breath).
  • Nicotine in breast milk.
  • Quitting or reducing smoking is good for you too. Your body starts to heal as soon as you stop smoking. You can learn more about the health benefits from quitting and how to conquer​ cravings.

Women also go through a lot of changes with their body. Some may have concerns about their weight or mood. Learn more about each of these changes by clicking the link below: