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Breastfeeding Smoking: Yes or No? Tips and Risks

When it comes to understanding whether to be able to smoke while breastfeeding, moms are faced with an important dilemma. The health of the child is the top priority and the desire to do what is best for the baby can clash with the habit of smoking. There are many risks associated with smoking during breastfeeding, read our practical tips for new mothers.

What are the risks of smoking while breastfeeding?

Breastfeeding smoking poses several health risks to the baby. The harmful substances present in cigarettes can pass through breast milk and affect the development of the baby. Risks include respiratory problems, increased risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), and possible long-term effects on the child’s cognitive and physical health.

How long does smoking remain in breast milk?

Breast milk is the first food that the newborn takes and should be as pure as possible. The toxic substances from smoking can persist in breast milk for several hours after smoking a cigarette, thus exposing the newborn to potential harm even after time from tobacco consumption.

What the WHO says about breastfeeding smoking

The World Health Organization is clear: smoking during breastfeeding is strongly discouraged. According to the WHO, mothers should avoid smoking to protect the health of their children and ensure that breast milk is as safe as possible.

Can you smoke while breastfeeding the e-cigarette? Yes or No?

Electronic cigarettes are often perceived as a less harmful choice than traditional cigarettes. However, these also contain nicotine and other potentially harmful substances that can be transferred to the baby through lactation. Therefore, the use of electronic cigarettes is also not recommended during lactation.

How many cigarettes can you smoke while breastfeeding?

Ideally, you should not smoke cigarettes while breastfeeding.  There is no “safe” number of cigarettes that you can smoke without putting your child’s health at risk. The only way to completely protect the newborn is to stop smoking.

Effects of smoking on breastfeeding

The effects of breastfeeding smoking may include a reduction in milk intake and a change in its taste, which may lead the baby to refuse breastfeeding. In addition, the chemicals present in smoking can alter the composition of breast milk, negatively affecting the nutrition of the baby.

If you can’t stop working here are some helpful tips to follow

For moms who find it difficult to quit smoking, there are a few steps that can help reduce the risks:

  • Smoking immediately after breastfeeding rather than before, to lengthen the time between the last cigarette and the next feeding.
  • Reduce the number of cigarettes smoked every day.
  • Smoking in separate rooms where the child lives and sleeps to limit exposure to second-hand smoke.
  • Consider using nicotine substitutes after consulting a doctor.

When talking about deciding whether to breastfeed smoking, the best choice for the health of the baby is always to quit. For moms struggling with this addiction, it is important to seek support and consider all options. Visit our website and discover how our products can make your motherhood easier and less stressful.


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