Veteran's Health Library Menu

Health Encyclopedia

Smoking & Pregnancy

Quitting Smoking During Pregnancy

You may have just learned you are pregnant, or you may be months along. Either way, it’s not too late to make a change. Every cigarette you don’t smoke is a benefit to you and your baby. Deciding not to smoke can be a tough choice, but you can change. Even if you’ve tried before, don’t give up. Many smokers try quitting 4 or 5 times before they succeed.

Pick a way to quit

You can stop smoking in either of the ways listed below:

  • Cold turkey. Today you smoke, tomorrow you don’t. This is rough at first, but changes take place quickly and withdrawal may be shorter.

  • Tapering off. Over time, reduce the number of cigarettes you smoke each day. To do so, increase the amount of time between each smoke. Try not to inhale.

  • Get support. Join a stop-smoking group or go online to get support.

  • Think about medicine. It is best not to take medicine during pregnancy. However, if you have tried other methods to quit and have been unsuccessful, talk with your healthcare provider. See if taking a medicine might be right for you.

Set a quit date

No matter which method you choose, pick a date to quit smoking entirely.

  • Choose a date within the next 2–4 weeks.

  • After picking the day, mark it in bold letters on a calendar.

Set limits

Whether you decide to quit cold turkey or to taper off, setting limits can help you quit.

  • Limit where you smoke. Pick one room or a porch, and smoke only in that place.

  • Make smoking outdoors a house rule. Other smokers won’t tempt you as much.

  • Hang a list of “quit benefits” in the spot where you smoke. Put one on the refrigerator and one on your car dashboard.

  • Join a stop-smoking group.

Your Limit List

Start by giving up cigarettes at the times you least need them. Write down a few more ideas.





Author: StayWell Custom Communications
Last Annual Review Date: 4/1/2019
Copyright © The StayWell Company, LLC. except where otherwise noted.
Disclaimer - Opens 'Disclaimer' in Dialog Window | Help | About Veterans Health Library