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Not only is quitting cold turkey safe, it's one of the best things you can do for yourself and your baby while you're pregnant. As soon as you give up your cigarettes, your baby will start getting more oxygen, and the risk of miscarriage, premature birth, and other complications will drop.
Quitting cold turkey can be difficult, especially if you're a heavy smoker. As your body adjusts to life without nicotine, you'll probably feel restless and irritable. The good news is that your baby won't share in the misery. There's no evidence that babies go through nicotine withdrawal, and they certainly won't miss a daily dose of tar and carbon monoxide. Besides, your withdrawal symptoms will fade in two or three weeks, and then you can finally stop thinking about cigarettes and start thinking about getting the baby's room ready.
For most women, the only risk to the cold-turkey approach is that it might not work. (Heavy smokers at high risk for seizures are the exception. For them, quitting abruptly could potentially cause a seizure.) If you're smoking a couple of packs a day, you may need to take a more gradual approach to quitting. Cut down to a pack a day, then to a half of a pack. The ultimate goal, of course, is to get to zero — and the sooner the better. If you still can't fight those cravings, ask your doctor for help. Quitting may be hard, but a healthy pregnancy is worth the effort.