Madonna’s Daughter Caught Smoking

It seems like I’ve read that teen smoking is down. But, that may not be the case if you are the teen of a celebrity. Just this week, Madonna’s 15-year-old daughter Lourdes Leon was photographed smoking with friends. Now, I’ve never smoked, but some who have may be thinking “What’s the big deal? It’s what you do when you are that age.” Part of the problem is at only 15; Lourdes shouldn’t be smoking for several reasons. First, she cannot legally buy cigarettes until she is 18. And second of all, we all know – smoking is bad for you. … Continue reading

Quitting Smoking Isn’t Easy, Even With Incentives

Every year, people decide to quit smoking. This is a very popular New Year’s Resolution. Many health insurance companies have started covering the cost of smoking cessation programs, and offering a lower premium rate to non-smokers. These incentives don’t make it any easier to quit smoking. About 20% of adults are smokers. Seven out of ten smokers say that they want to quit. Untold numbers of smokers are currently struggling to keep their New Year’s Resolution, and finally achieve their goal of quitting smoking. I have heard it said that it is harder to quit using nicotine than it is … Continue reading

Alcoholism Risk Involves More Than Just Genes

Some conditions that are passed down through a family’s genes are not exactly the kinds of things that anyone likes to talk about. Things like mental illness and alcoholism are very important to understand, yet discussion of them among family members may not be very frequent if they are discussed at all. This can make it difficult to know your family history of these conditions. If you know that someone in your family is an alcoholic or you suspect that there may be an alcoholic in your family, take heart. Although there are genes that are linked to alcoholism that … Continue reading

Genetics Influence Your Ability to Quit Smoking

Are you a smoker who is having great difficulty quitting? Part of the reason you are struggling so much could be due to your genetics. A study that focused on twins, and their smoking habits, revealed that there is a genetic link that influences people to start smoking, (and affects how hard it is for them to quit). I have plenty of smokers in my family. My mother has two brothers, and both of them smoke. One of my brothers is a smoker. My father has at least two siblings that spent many years smoking. This is the sort of … Continue reading

One in Five U.S. Adults Still Smoke

The other day, I called my best friend. She had just learned her holiday weekend trip home to Illinois would be moved up a day but not for a good reason. Her octogenarian father was having open heart surgery. She called her mom to tell her she was leaving to make the seven hour drive, but first warned her that she was smoking again, after trying to quit recently. As a supportive friend, I told her not to worry about that right now. I know she needs to quit, I’ve talked to her about it, but a stressful time like … Continue reading

Smoking During Pregnancy May Lead to Behavior Problems in Children

I spend a lot of time reading through blogs and news related to pregnancy. Pregnancy has been around since the beginning of mankind (obviously), and yet there are always new headlines. But once in a while, I run across something, usually a study, that makes me want to slap my monitor and say “duh!” Sometimes you wonder why our money is being spent on research that concludes with what most of us would consider common sense. (Okay, stepping off my soap box now.) One such study gives us one more reason to not smoke during pregnancy. If the health risks … Continue reading

Making Healthy and Reasonable Resolutions

It’s that time of year: time to start thinking about New Year’s resolutions. I like the idea of a fresh start for the New Year. But I don’t always stick with my resolutions. I think that’s because I try to make them too big and too broad. Know what I mean? Get in shape. Eat better. Exercise more. They’re kind of nebulous and easy to forget. According to, the most popular New Year’s resolutions include: Losing weight/exercising more/getting into shape Eating better/eating right Managing debt/saving money Quitting smoking Reducing stress Getting a better job Getting a better education Travel … Continue reading

The Pregnancy Blog Review for August 26-31

Welcome to the pregnancy blog review. This is where I summarize the week’s blogs in one place, making it easy to see what is new. Click on the titles of each blog to read the rest of the story. Sometimes when the baby arrives, the picture isn’t as rosy as we imagined. Some new mothers experience symptoms ranging from a slight blue mood to severe depression. Read more in New Survey Offers Startling Insight into the Postpartum Period. Pregnancy is an exciting time in life, whether the pregnancy was planned or not. Enjoying this amazing time of life is difficult … Continue reading

Smoking in Pregnancy and SIDS

Canadian researchers have examined the link between smoking during pregnancy and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) in premature babies. The study was conducted at the University of Calvary in Alberta, Canada. A double risk was found among women who smoke during pregnancy. The researchers studied the breathing reflexes in two groups of preterm babies, those with mothers who smoked during pregnancy and babies of non smoking mothers. They found the breathing reflexes in the group of preterm babies with smoking mothers to be consistent with a higher risk of SIDS. For the study, researchers took a baseline reading of all … Continue reading

Quit Smoking for a Calmer Baby

As if there weren’t enough good reasons to quit smoking during pregnancy, it appears another can be added to the list. Quitting smoking may result in a more relaxed baby, according to researchers. It appears that a mother’s smoking habits may have an affect on the baby’s temperament. The study was conducted by UK and US researchers at the University of Illinois and the University of York. The study looked at 18,000 infants. The mothers were classified into four groups: non smokers, smokers who quit during the pregnancy, very light smokers and heavy smokers. Information was collected about the pregnancy, … Continue reading