Lambeth Council to provide free vapes to help pregnant women quit smoking
Lambeth Council has launched an initiative to provide free vapes for pregnant women.
The council will be offering free e-cigarettes for pregnant women who are trying to quit smoking. The scheme will save expectant parents money and help those who find it difficult to give up smoking during pregnancy. The stop smoking scheme could save parents up to £2,000 per year, according to council estimates.
Speaking to the BBC, a spokesperson for the council explained that smoking during pregnancy is a leading cause of premature births, miscarriages and stillbirths. Offering free vapes to pregnant women will help those who struggle to give up, enabling expectant mothers to cut down their nicotine intake and reduce exposure to other harmful toxins found in cigarettes.
The spokesperson acknowledged that the best course of action is for women to give up smoking as soon as they find out that they are pregnant but recognised that this can be extremely hard for some people. Vaping is seen as “less harmful” than smoking cigarettes and could help to lower risks of complications during pregnancy and labour.
Studies show that women from low-income households are more likely to smoke during pregnancy than women from higher income households.
Smoking poses health risks to unborn babies, as well as mothers during pregnancy and is a leading cause of dental health issues, heart disease, cancer and respiratory diseases.
Stop smoking services are available for all NHS patients via GP and dental practices and local pharmacies but the new Lambeth Council initiative is designed specifically to target pregnant women who want help and support to try to quit smoking during pregnancy. Health officials are hoping that those who are trying to give up or cut down will find it easier with the support of the programme.