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Newborn and Infant Care

Smoking

06/19/2006

Question:

my mother who lives up stairs smokes cigarettes and when we got home from the hospital my girlfriend went directly downstairs to our bedroom and shut the door and stayed in there pretty much all day. i know that smoking around babies in not good but my girlfriend refuses to take the baby upstairs becaue of my mom smoking but she does not or will not smoke if the baby is in the room. is it ok and safe for the baby to be in the room as long as no one is smoking at the time. or is it unsafe for the baby to be in the room if some one smoked a cigarette and finished a few minutes before the baby enterd the room or if they put the cigarette out when the baby enters the room?

Answer:

The effects of cigarette remain in the room for sometime after the cigarette is extinguished. The amount of time it takes to remove all remnants of cigarette smoke from the room is highly variable. (remember the person you've smelled cigarettes on when they claimed they hadn't been smoking?) Perhaps you could suggest that your mother come to visit the baby, instead of the baby going to the mother. This can be a very difficult situation with in a family. Be sure to talk with your mother, about the risk of second hand smoke on anyone, but especially a baby. If you need additional support, ask a health care provider about the situation.

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Response by:

Tina   Weitkamp, RNC, MSN Tina Weitkamp, RNC, MSN
Associate Professor of Clinical Nursing
College of Nursing
University of Cincinnati