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Are you pregnant and trying to beat smoking? Congratulations! Smoking cigarettes is never a healthy habit, but it is particularly harmful to unborn babies. The consequences of smoking through pregnancy can include stillbirth, low birth weight, premature labor and lack of oxygen for your baby, which can cause all kinds of trouble. The good news is that, if you smoke very early on in pregnancy, those adverse effects will cease to exist. But, how do you go about stopping smoking?

Stopping smoking may be the most important thing you can do for a healthy pregnancy, but it can sure be hard. I quit smoking myself (before I started trying to conceive) an it was a struggle. But, quitting smoking doesn't have to be as big a deal as the media make out of it these days, if your mind is made up. Here are a few things that might help you.

  • Identify your triggers. Some people most want a cigarette in the morning with their coffee (which you may want to give up as well when you are expecting a baby), others are social smokers, and then some smoke when they feel stressed. Whatever the case, knowing what situations most make you want to smoke will help you devise a strategy to stay off the cigarettes.
  • If possible, don't watch other people smoke during the initial quitting process.
  • Drink a glass of water when you feel like a cigarette. Or try lollipops, chewing gum, of sweets to satisfy oral needs.
  • If some of what you like about smoking is having your hands busy, try having a stress ball, taking up knitting, or something else that will help you forget you don't have a cigarette in your hands.
  • Think about your baby when you want to light up. Read articles about what smoking can do to a fetus.
  • If your partner smokes, ask him to quit smoking together with you.

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