Knowing this, the UK is getting creative to ensure that their newborns arrive healthy.
In order to to encourage moms-to-be to quit, the NHS Trust in Shropshire plans to offer gift vouchers and beauty treatments.
The incentives, which also include baby goods, will go to those women who can prove they have kicked the habit.
Expectant mothers who agree to the trials will have various examinations, such as carbon monoxide monitoring, to show if they have recently smoked. Samples may also be taken to prove their bodies are free of nicotine and other harmful substances found in cigarettes.
Dr Kevin Lewis, director of Shropshire’s Help 2 Quit service, said the plan could help improve live birth rates, result in better health for newborn babies and cut NHS treatment costs.
He added: ‘We are dealing with an addiction and we are dealing with human behaviour and we know from studies that people are often not as motivated by the benefits to future health as they are by the here and now.’
Last year, 466 women – equal to 23 per cent of maternities in Telford and Wrekin – were still smoking up to delivery.
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