The expectant mother needs to take care of her health during the period of gestation because her condition also affects the child. Pregnant women are reviewing their diet and adding physical activity to their daily routines. Parents should avoid bad habits to protect their children from various negative factors as much as possible.
The mother-to-be should avoid alcohol and cigarettes. Women often forget about such dangers as passive smoking. Numerous studies show that passive smoking carries no fewer risks for a woman and a newborn child than active smoking.
Cigarettes contain over 4,000 chemicals, most of which are carcinogenic. Inhalation of toxic gases harms the respiratory and nervous systems of a person. Parents who want to protect their children should keep their children away from smokers.
Babies Second Hand Smoke from Cigarettes, Vape, and Marijuana
Numerous studies have shown that passive smoking is more dangerous for others than active smoking for a smoker. Tobacco smoke contains more than 250 hazardous components. Over 50 compounds are classified as carcinogenic. They contribute to the formation of diseases in the respiratory tract and the cardiovascular system.
Frequent inhalation of cigarette smoke threatens the occurrence of cancer. Vape is considered less dangerous for adults than tobacco. Children are at risk of poisoning by harmful substances by inhaling vapor with nicotine. It is no less harmful for babies to inhale fumes from marijuana. It contains cannabinoids.
They cause irreparable harm to the children’s brains: marijuana negatively affects the hippocampus. This is the area of the brain responsible for attention and memory. Secondary smoking of marijuana is bad for the child’s respiratory tract and causes eye irritation.
Danger Second Smoke for Babies
Passive smoking has a particularly strong effect on the body of children. Babies are at the highest risk from secondhand smoke inhalation. Their body is more vulnerable to combustion products of tobacco, hookah, narcotic substances, and electronic cigarettes.
According to WHO, approximately half of all children on the planet suffer from health problems caused by passive smoking. Inhalation of second-hand smoke provokes respiratory diseases, middle ear infections, and neurological complications. The death of the baby is possible in some cases.
The baby is most sensitive to the effects of tobacco smoke in the first months of life. The more an infant inhales fumes from cigarettes, the higher the risk of bronchitis, pneumonia, and coughing. Often these diseases are difficult and require treatment in a hospital.
Children of passive smokers are more likely to suffer from respiratory diseases than children of parents who do not smoke. The constant stay of babies in the smoky room contributes to the development of chronic diseases.
Babies who are exposed to second-hand smoke develop asthma one and a half times more often than other children. The disease develops faster in children of smokers who are prone to asthma. It is provoked by cotinine (a breakdown product of nicotine).
Children of smoking parents often have cotinine levels ten times higher than children of non-smoking families. Asthma in infants is accompanied by dry cough, asthma attacks, and pain in the chest area.
Diseases of the ear, throat, nose
Babies who constantly inhale cigarette smoke are more prone to seasonal infections. Tobacco combustion products cause hypertrophy of the adenoid tissue. Often children under two years of age suffer from otitis media – an acute infectious disease of the middle ear. Ear infections occur because bacteria accumulate in the ear canals.
Bacterial contamination of the mucous membranes occurs with increased intensity under the influence of cigarette smoke. The nasal cavity and respiratory tract lose their ability to naturally cleanse bacteria. This causes inflammatory processes that are accompanied by severe pain in children.
Deadly inflammation of the membranes of the brain in children occurs due to the ingestion of the pathogenic bacteria Neisseria meningitidis into the baby’s body. The disease is transmitted by airborne droplets. An increase in meningitis in children is observed in families where one or two parents are active smokers.
This is because tobacco smoke promotes the attachment of bacteria to the mucous membrane of the nasopharynx. Smokers are much more likely to carry bacteria than people who don’t smoke. Meningitis is especially dangerous for immunocompromised babies caused by diseases due to second-hand smoking.
Children who are exposed to tobacco smoke from the first days of life often have problems with their blood vessels. This is because endothelial cells are damaged (they cover the vessels from the inside). Such damage is permanent. They can appear in the first years of a child’s life.
Dozens of hazardous carcinogenic substances enter the body of young children during the second inhalation of tobacco smoke. The blood vessels and the aorta become stiffer because of them. Long-term passive smoking contributes to the development of cardiovascular diseases in adulthood.
Over six thousand cases of SIDS occur annually in the US, according to research. Some causes of death are attributed to underweight newborns due to secondary smoking. More than two thousand cases are directly related to the effects of carcinogens on the baby’s body. Children simply stop breathing in their sleep due to past respiratory diseases and weakened immunity.
Is Second Hand Smoke bad for babies in The Womb?
Inhalation of second-hand smoke by a future mother carries many risks for the course of pregnancy, the development of the fetus, and the baby after birth. The main danger of passive smoking is the occurrence of premature birth. Tobacco smoke causes children to be born with insufficient body weight.
Passive smoking provokes the development of pathologies in the fetus. Frequent inhalation of hazardous tobacco combustion products causes defects in the cardiovascular system and diseases of the internal organs of the fetus. The expectant mother can provoke bleeding during pregnancy and premature separation of the placenta if she smokes.
The threat to pregnant women is smoke from cigarettes. These are the remnants of tobacco that cover furniture and household items. The expectant mother touches the toxins and then they enter her body. Smoke residues adversely affect the intrauterine development of the lungs of the fetus.
Keeping Your Child Safe from Second Hand Smoke
Passive smoking is much more dangerous than it might seem at first glance. An active smoker inhales about 20% of the smoke and the remaining 80% is released into the environment. The smoke contains carbon dioxide, ammonia, acetone, hydrogen cyanide, phenol, and other substances dangerous to the baby.
Diseases caused by passive smoking in children require complex and long-term treatment. Often the consequences of passive smoking appear at an older age. Children of smokers may suffer from mental disorders. Parents need to protect their babies from second-hand cigarette smoke.
Stop smoking cigarettes, vaping, and marijuana – This is the most effective method of protecting an infant from the effects of nicotine. Harmful carcinogens settle on carpets and furniture if people smoke in the house. Children touch resin particles and carcinogens enter the child’s bodies.
Hygiene – Wash your hands frequently if you are a smoking parent, even if you smoke outside the home. Carcinogens remain on human skin. Their concentration will be enough to adversely affect the health of the child.
Don’t encourage the smoker – Do not create comfortable conditions for the smoker. If one or more family members smoke, do not encourage them and give themed gifts. Help the smoker to quit the habit.
Demand compliance with the law from other people – In many countries of the world it is forbidden to smoke in public places (at bus stops, restaurants, cafes, and shops). Pregnant women and parents with children need to remind other smokers of their rights and the dangers of passive smoking.
Stop smoking in the car – A large concentration of smoke remains in the cabin even when the fan is on or the window is open. It is necessary to carry out a comprehensive cleaning of the salon to clean the car. Parents cannot do the procedure often. It is important to avoid smoking in the car yourself and forbid other people from doing so.
Do not allow guests to smoke in the house – Such a decision may seem rude, but it will protect the baby. Additional hoods and ventilation shafts should be installed if it is impossible to avoid smoking indoors. Furniture surfaces and floors must be cleaned frequently.
Young children will not talk about how they feel uncomfortable because of tobacco smoke. Parents should always be aware of the dangers of carcinogens and cigarette combustion products. It will be possible to avoid the occurrence of dangerous diseases if you protect babies from second-hand smoke. Children will be healthier in infancy and later in life.