Midwives interactions with women who smoke in pregnancy

Document Type


Publication details

Ebert, L, Freeman, L, Fahy, K & Van Der Reit, P 2009, 'Midwives Interactions with Women who Smoke in Pregnancy', British Journal of Midwifery, vol. 17, no. 1, pp. 24-29.

Peer Reviewed



This article presents the findings from a study examining midwives’ interactions with women who smoke in pregnancy. The aim of this study was to find out how midwives currently interact with women who smoke in pregnancy, in relation to the women’s health and wellbeing. The study used an interpretive interactionism design. There were two major findings: there is incongruity between midwives’ internal discourses and expressed discourses when working with women who smoke in pregnancy and smoking cessation advice interactions typically do not involve a dialogue. Smoking cessation advice interactions are predictable, monotonous and non-productive. This type of interaction is best understood as a game with set rules and roles. Midwives need a woman-centred discourse from which to engage in an effective dialogue with women who smoke in pregnancy. Recommendations for practice and education are discussed.

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