(PAOLI) - Infants born to mothers who smoked during pregnancy are often born with low birth weight, reduced lung function, addiction to nicotine, lower intelligence
Carol Johnson of the Times-Mail reports that in 2012, 138 babies were born in Lawrence County to mothers who smoked during pregnancy. Health care costs to the state for treating their problems totaled $238,453, according to Promoting Smokefree Pregnancies in Indiana.
The coalition wants to help women stop smoking. To that end, it is holding 17 workshops around Indiana to give advice and support to pregnant women who want to quit. Smoke Free Bedford and the Orange County Tobacco Coalition have partnered with the state group to host a workshop in Paoli Tuesday.
"The smoking rate for pregnant women in Indiana is 18.5 percent," said Karin DuBois, who works on tobacco prevention for Hoosier Uplands. "In Lawrence County, the rate is much higher with 27.7 percent of pregnant women smoking during pregnancy."
In Orange County, the rate is even higher, at 29.5 percent. In 2012, 78 babies were born to mothers who smoked in Orange County, at a cost of $134,664 to the state for health care, according to the Smokefree Pregnancies coalition.
The upside to the issue is that interest in quitting smoking is much higher during pregnancy than at any other time in a woman's life.
In addition to pregnant women, DuBois said, anyone who works with pregnant women also can attend.
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