Pregnant women, babies benefit from Tobacco Free Program


XENIA — Pregnant women and their support partners can quit smoking while earning free diapers through the Baby & Me – Tobacco Free Program.

The Baby & Me – Tobacco Free Program is a smoking cessation program for pregnant women and their families. It helps pregnant women and a support partner quit smoking while pregnant and then remain quit after baby is born. Through a series of face-to-face counseling sessions, women and their families are given tools and support needed to make a successful quit attempt and are rewarded with free diapers in the form of a diaper voucher for their success. Research has shown that incentives, such as diapers, are a unique and positive motivator to aid in behavior change. We know that encouraging pregnant women to quit smoking is vital to ensuring the best birth outcomes.

The program was recently designated a “Best Practice” by the Association of Maternal and Child Health Programs (AMCHP). Programs with this designation have been reviewed by experts in the public health field as proven effective.

Laurie Adams, President and Founder of the program, on learning of the designation stated, “This “Best Practice” designation is further confirmation that investing in healthy children begins with offering tailored support to pregnant women and their families. Many pregnant women who smoke are consumed by guilt and wish they could quit. We offer a way for these women to realize their dream of being free from the grip of tobacco addiction, at a time when it matters most to not only their health, but the health of their unborn children.”

Pregnant women who smoke have an extra motivation to quit — the health of their unborn child. Smoking during pregnancy can lead to low birth weights infants, and premature birth. In the longer term, maternal smoking during pregnancy is associated with a range of poor outcomes in children including ADHD and cognitive dysfunction. Children who grow up in smoke-free homes enjoy many health benefits, so it is equally important to remain quit.

To date, over 18,000 women and their families across the United States have benefited from this program.

Those interested in helping the next generation live tobacco-free and learning more about the Baby & Me– Tobacco Free Program, including finding out where to go locally to enroll can visit www.babyandmetobaccofree.org.

To enroll in Greene County or for a referral to another county, contact Shernaz Reporter at Greene County Public Health, 937-374-5617 or by email at sreporter@gcph.info.