Smoking rate among pregnant women declines in WA
OLYMPIA - AP-WA--Pregnant Smokers Fewer pregnant women are smoking in Washington state.
A survey released today by the state Department of Health says 10 percent of women smoked during the last three months of their pregnancies in 2001 (the most recent year for which data is available).
That's down from 13 percent in 1998.
Smoking while pregnant increases the risk of premature delivery, underdeveloped babies, miscarriage, sudden infant death syndrome, learning disabilities, asthma, and other problems.
About half the women who use tobacco before getting pregnant quit by their third trimester.
Secretary of Health Mary Selecky says it's good the numbers are going down, but there are still too many pregnant women who smoke.