Reduce Your Baby's Risk "Babies born to mothers who smoke are at greater risk for pneumonia, asthma, sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and acute ear infections," says Carol Anderson, R.N., a lactation consultant at Rose Medical Center in Denver. If you breastfeed, however, you will help protect your baby from these dangers. (Research shows that formula-fed infants have a much higher incidence of these problems then breastfed babies.)
Ask About The Patch "Smoking cessation products, particularly nicotine patches, are always preferable to smoking," Anderson says. "The patch delivers a lower and less variable level of nicotine than, say, nicotine gum." Keep in mind that if you choose a 21 mg patch you will have significantly more nicotine in your breast milk than if you chose a 7 to14 mg patch.
Time It Right "Nicotine levels are highest just after you smoke a cigarette, so it's best to wait an hour and a half to three hours after a smoke to breastfeed," Anderson says. Infants tend to eat very often especially in the first months, so it's smart to have pumped nicotine-free breast milk at the ready.
Don't Co-Sleep A baby should never share a bed with a smoker; it increases her risk of SIDS.
Copyright © 2012 Meredith Corporation.
All content on this Web site, including medical opinion and any other health-related information, is for informational purposes only and should not be considered to be a specific diagnosis or treatment plan for any individual situation. Use of this site and the information contained herein does not create a doctor-patient relationship. Always seek the direct advice of your own doctor in connection with any questions or issues you may have regarding your own health or the health of others.