Vaping has always been considered an alternative for smoking. Many people wishing to make the transition to a tobacco-free lifestyle opted for e-cigarettes thinking that these solutions contained no nicotine. But, before you switch to the e-cigs, know that the e-liquids contained in them do have nicotine. Check the packaging and you’ll clearly see the drug content in the form of a percentage. You’ll also note the warning that pregnant women should not vape.
Vaping is Not Advisable as Nicotine Replacement Therapy
If you’re pregnant and looking for an alternative to deal with your nicotine cravings, know that vaping is not the answer. Irrespective of the kind of device or e-juices you use, nicotine in any form is harmful for the development of the baby. Like studies conducted at the National Center for Biotechnology Information show, the nicotine added to e-juices is extracted from tobacco leaves in salt form. Interestingly, when you smoke a conventional cigarette, some of the tobacco content burns away. But vaping has free-base nicotine which is, essentially a more potent form of the drug. As a result, the ions enter your bloodstream faster and get absorbed by the tissues more easily. For this reason, pregnant women could unwittingly consume more of the drug without being aware of it. You also need to be wary of the fact that the different variety of flavors in e-juices adds to the enjoyment without delivering any irritation to the throat. Check out this feature on Parade that warns you how ingesting nicotine during pregnancy can affect the metabolism of the baby after it is born, and also create long-term health problems.
E-Liquids Contain Various Other Chemicals Also
Smoking conventional cigarettes has been proved to be harmful for pregnant women. Extensive research has been conducted on the downsides and scientists are well aware of how the chemicals can harm you. However, studies on vaping are, as yet, incomplete. Like this article on Mayo Clinic explains, e-liquids contain a range of chemicals. And, research is only starting to discover the long-term effects of vaping and how it can interfere with the normal growth of your baby. Here are some of the ill-effects of vaping you should be aware of.
- Ectopic Pregnancy – This is a condition where the fertilized embryo implants in a location other than the uterus where it can develop normally. Often times, the egg attaches on the walls of the fallopian tubes or outside the uterus. Such pregnancies are dangerous for both, mother and baby, and have to be surgically removed.
- Placental Abruption – When the placenta detaches from the walls of the uterus well before delivery date the condition is called placental abruption. Pregnant women are typically advised bed rest to save the fetus and may have to go for a C-section.
- Premature Delivery – The birth of the infant before full term is a common occurrence in the case of women who smoke and use other drugs.
- Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) – Close to 2,500 newborns die within the first few months of their birth as reported by this study conducted by the US Department of Health and Human Service. Although the exact causes are still unclear considering that most babies seem healthy, doctors have identified several possibilities. Smoking parents and accidental suffocation when infants sleep in their parents’ beds are some of the risks.
- Stillbirth – When fetuses die in the uterus after around 20 weeks of gestation, that’s called a stillbirth.
- Miscarriages – While pregnant women run the risk of losing the fetus at any time, the risk may be more serious if the mother smokes or consumes nicotine in any form.
- Birth Defects – Smoking or vaping can result in the different kinds of birth defects in the infant. These defects can include cleft palates, improper brain development, weak lungs, and an inefficient immune system that raises vulnerability to diseases. Many newborns may also have problems with the nervous systems and other cardiovascular issues. Changes in the baby’s DNA is another risk that mothers should be aware of.
- Low Birth Weight – Nicotine during pregnancy can result in a less than normal birth weight in the baby. If that happens, the infant will need neonatal intensive care. That’s because the risk of mortality is higher as is the possibility of improper development.
Vaping or Any Kind of Nicotine Ingestion Can Interfere with Fertility
If you’re trying to conceive, consuming nicotine in any form can delay pregnancy. Do keep in mind that passive smoking or vaping by spending time in the company of people who smoke can also affect fertility levels. Make sure to let your doctor know that you’ve been vaping, so you can receive the proper treatment. Of course, the best option for pregnant women is to quit the habit well before conception to eliminate risks to the infant. Men should also quit vaping while trying to conceive because the flavoring agents in e-juices can result in poor sperm quality and low motility.
Breastfeeding During Vaping is Not Recommended
Your baby’s doctor will warn against the dangers of vaping when you’re breastfeeding. Most new mothers are unaware that the nicotine can transfer to the infant via breastmilk. Even if you’ve chosen 0% nicotine, the other chemicals present in the e-juices could enter the newborn’s system and cause illnesses. Further, the long-term effects of vaping and breastfeeding are not yet completely identified and it is best that you avoid exposing the infant as much as possible.
Whatever may be the vaping devices you choose including the Juul, click here and you’ll learn that they do contain nicotine which can be potentially harmful for the growing fetus. If you’re looking for alternatives for smoking, check with your doctor for safer methods that don’t involve ingesting nicotine in any form. The best solution would be to quit smoking well before conceiving to raise your chances having a healthy baby. Talk to an expert doctor about the best options available to you.