Smoking, Drugs, & Alcohol During Pregnancy

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If you use drugs, smoke, or drink alcohol while you’re pregnant, your baby may:

  • be born too early or too small
  • be born too sick to live
  • be developmentally delayed
  • have heart or breathing problems

Your baby needs your love and attention. A mom who uses drugs or abuses alcohol may not care for her baby properly, and is putting her health at risk.


Smoking during pregnancy is the most preventable cause of illness and death among mothers and infants. Smoking during pregnancy may slow your baby’s growth. Small babies are more likely to have health problems.


Be sure to tell your doctor if you are taking any drugs (even over-the-counter drugs like aspirin) when you become pregnant. Drugs can pass through the placenta to your baby. Certain drugs may cause birth defects.


When mothers drink during pregnancy, their babies may be born with birth defects, mental and developmental delays, and stunted growth. No one knows how much is too much. The best advice is to not drink beer, wine, or liquor at all during pregnancy.

This post was last updated on January 13th, 2022 at 4:12 PM

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