401 Meeker St Delta CO 81416 970.874.4421

New mom celebrates a year of being smoke-free

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Photo by Pat Sunderland Public health nurse Kelly Beard congratulates Sarah Hall on her smoke-free lifestyle. Sarah has two children, Ava, a second grader, and Joseph, who celebrates his first birthday Oct. 21.

Sarah Hall tried every smoking cessation program imaginable, from hypnotherapy to the patch to acupuncture. It wasn't until she tried electric acupressure on her ear that she was able to successfully modify her behavior and kick her smoking habit. DC Stop Smoking in Grand Junction boasts an 85 percent success rate with just one auriculotherapy treatment.

Sarah had a big incentive to quit smoking -- she was pregnant with her second child. She cut way back on smoking when she was pregnant with her daughter Ava, but quickly resumed the habit. The second time around, with love in her heart for both her daughter and unborn child, she was determined to succeed, and she found additional support at the Delta County Health Department.

The health department has implemented the Baby & Me - Tobacco Free program, a prenatal cessation program to reduce the burden of tobacco use and help improve birth outcomes in Delta County.

Karen O'Brien, health education coordinator for Delta County, says, "We know the harm tobacco use causes to pregnant women and their unborn child. We also know that pregnant women are highly motivated to quit smoking. This program is research-based and proven to help our pregnant Moms quit smoking and not return to smoking after the baby is born."

Laurie Adams, Baby & Me - Tobacco Free Program founder and executive director, provided the technical support and training to Delta County Health Department and staff members to enroll women into the program. "Delta County Health Department is a perfect fit for implementing the program," she states. "They provide services to a large number of prenatal women and they support their patients' quit attempts. They also work with physicians, hospitals and health care providers within the county who could refer patients into the program. Quitting smoking is one of the most important things a pregnant woman can do. The program's goal is to help women have healthy babies, born on time."

Women who enroll in the program, quit smoking and stay quit after the baby is born receive free diapers for 12 months.

Because she gave up her teaching job to give birth, Sarah said the diapers have been a great bonus. She also enjoys getting through the day without a hacking cough or shortness of breath.

"The greatest gift a woman can give her baby is a tobacco-free pregnancy and a tobacco-free home," says public health nurse Kelly Beard. "We look forward to seeing more successes in the future."

More information about the Baby & Me - Tobacco Free program can be obtained by calling the health department at 874-2165.

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