Vaping and Breastfeeding
Vaping and Pregnancy
Nicotine has a damaging effect on the fetus, whether it comes in the form of vapor or cigarette smoke. The first thought every woman has when she finds out she is pregnant is that she needs to quit smoking .To get rid of this nasty habit, some women turn to the e-cigarettes. But are they completely safe for the baby? The reason why there are not enough studies regarding vaping during pregnancy is the ethical matter. A scientist can not directly expose pregnant women to vapor and risk the damaging effects to the fetus.
Risks of vaping during pregnancy include:
- Ectopic pregnancy
- Placental abruption
- Low birth weight
- Craniofacial defects
- Brain damage
- Lung problems
Children whose mothers used to vape during pregnancy are at higher risk of developing asthma, colic, mental health issues, and attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder later in life.
The one thing every doctor agrees is that you should avoid all nicotine products if you are pregnant. That includes regular cigarettes, e-cigarettes, vaporizers, nicotine patches, and other smoking cessation products that contain nicotine.
Vaping and Breastfeeding
Once your baby is born, that does not mean that you should start vaping again. Nicotine from the vape juice can affect your breast milk, as it has an adverse impact on lactation process. If you are struggling with sustaining your addiction or quitting, you should at least be using the juice without nicotine.
The nicotine level in breast milk reaches its peak an hour after the last cigarette. According to some health care practitioners, babies whose mothers consume nicotine products have difficulties with sleeping. However, there is no evidence that nicotine in breast milk can cause severe damage to child’s health.
The bigger issue is the second-hand smoke, or in our case, vapor, that also contains nicotine. Exposure of the child to the second-hand smoke can cause severe health problems, even sudden infant death syndrome. Therefore it is of the essence not to use any nicotine product around your baby, not even e-cigarettes or vaporizers. However, it is important to emphasize that substances emitted by the tobacco cigarette smoke are not the same as those exuded by vaping. On vaping vs. smoking, you can read on here.
The Effects of Second-Hand Vapor on the Baby
Given the fact that vaping industry is relatively new, it is understandable why there are so few studies regarding such a narrow subject as the effect of second-hand vapor on the baby. The majority of the studies are dealing with the consequences of second-hand smoke. Keeping in mind that vapor from an e-cigarette does contain nicotine, we can conclude that it can be dangerous for the baby.
Nicotine exposure can cause asthma, ear infection, pneumonia, bronchitis, and breathing problems in general. In case that you vape while still breastfeeding your baby, check our guide on vaping and parenting.
As there is only handful of studies regarding vaping and breastfeeding, we can only assume how this guilty pleasure can affect the baby. What we do know is that nicotine from breast milk can cause sleeping problems to the baby. The bigger issue is second-hand exposure to vapor which can cause asthma and other breathing problems. The most severe side effect of second-hand smoke is sudden infant death syndrome.
Given all the facts, we can not help but wonder: is it worth the risk?