Yourwellness Magazine Comments on Smoking Ban Study

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With health experts calling for carbon monoxide screening for mothers who smoke during pregnancy, Yourwellness Magazine explored a recent study which found that the smoking ban in Belgium led to fewer pre-term births.

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Smokefree South West and a coalition of baby charities, campaigners, leading academics and health experts have called for a national carbon monoxide (CO) screening programme for mums-to-be to help save more babies’ lives from mothers who smoke during pregnancy, it was reported June 30th. The Lullaby Trust’s Chief Executive Francine Bates, commented, “We know that smoking in pregnancy is a significant risk factor for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)…Mothers under 20 are five times more likely to suffer the tragedy of SIDS than those over 30. They are also more likely to smoke and find it difficult to understand why smoking has such a devastating impact on their baby’s health. Immediate results from a quick and simple test, together with the support from their midwife could persuade many young women to kick their habit.” (

With this in mind, Yourwellness Magazine found that the smoking ban in Belgium led to fewer pre-term births. According to Yourwellness Magazine, “You already know by now that, if you smoke when pregnant, you can stunt the growth of your baby and shorten the length of your pregnancy, and you’re probably aware that exposure to second-hand smoke could also affect the birth of your child, but until now scientists had less of an idea about how smoking bans impact preterm birth rates.” (

Yourwellness Magazine explained that the study, "Mothers and babies benefit from smoking ban", published in the British Medical Journal on 8th March 2012 (, investigated trends in births – before 37 weeks gestation – from 2002 to 2011, because this covered pre-, mid- and post-smoking ban periods of time. Led by Tim Nawrot, of Belgium’s Hasselt University, the researchers found that the risk of preterm birth decreased after the introduction of each phase of the smoking ban, but no decreasing trend in preterm was evident in the years or months before the bans. Yourwellness Magazine commented that, as a result of these findings, more countries in Europe and around the world should adopt stricter legislation on smoking in public places, as this will produce huge, swift health benefits.

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