I thought that pretty much everyone knew that you should absolutely NOT be drinking, smoking or using any kind of drugs while pregnant. Well, whether or not most women know it can be harmful to their future bundle of joy, it doesn't seem to stop everyone from indulging while pregnant.

What's going on here? Why are women still doing these dangerous activities and harming their developing babies? The only good news is that us Latinas seem to be engaging in these risky behaviors way less than other groups.

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According to a new government report, 21.8% of white women smoked cigarettes during their pregnancy, whereas African-American women continued smoking 14.2% of the time. Latina women smoked at less than half the rate of our caucasion counterparts, or about 6.5% of the time. Those are pretty good numbers for us, but why are we smoking at all?

The lower numbers of risky behavior stayed consistent among Latinas when it comes to alcohol and drug use, with  7.4% of us drinking and 3.1% using drugs (!) during pregnancy. But these numbers are still NOT low enough! Why are mothers doing any of this during their pregnancies? Don't we all know how bad it is for the baby to keep smoking, drinking and using drugs?!

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Maybe I'm being quick to judge but, after reading about all of the dangerous side-effects of engaging in high-risk behavior during pregnancy (such as physical and mental health problems for the baby after childbirth), how can anyone think it's Ok? I hope the government will be doing more to get the word out about the dangers of smoking, drinking and drug use during pregnancy. One senator in Rhode Island is trying to ban smoking with kids in the car. That's a great step, yes, but if smoking begins during pregnancy, then it's just not enough.

Did you ever drink or smoke during your pregnancy? Do you think these numbers need to keep going down? Share with us in the comments below!

Image via zippaparazza!/flickr

About the author

Irina Gonzalez is a Staff Writer for MamásLatinas. She loves pop culture, social media, photography and, above all, discovering new places. She's also a foodie eating healthy and learning to enjoy exercise.

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