Ultrasound Images Show What Happens in the Womb When Moms Smoke (PHOTOS)

baby in wombEveryone knows smoking is bad when you're pregnant ... but a new study reveals just HOW bad by showing a baby's reaction in the womb to cigarettes when mom lights up.


Researchers at Durham and Lancaster universities observed 80 ultrasound scans of 20 fetuses -- four of whom had moms who smoked 14 cigarettes per day on average. 

Fetuses of mothers who smoked, it turns out, showed more mouth movements and self-touching than fetuses of non smokers -- and given these types of movements typically decline as babies mature, this suggests that those exposed to cigarettes were neurologically underdeveloped. Check out a side-by-side comparison below of a baby whose mother smoked on the left, non-smoker on the right:

baby womb smoking

What's eerie is that it almost looks like the babies of smokers are grimacing or cringing ... researchers hope these images will help convince pregnant women to stop smoking, and I hafta say, if these images won't get them to kick the habit, nothing will!

More from The Stir: Smoking 'E-Cigarettes' During Pregnancy: Is It Safe? (VIDEO)

Because let's face it: Moms rarely get to see physical evidence of what their bad choices during pregnancy actually do to their babies -- because they're in the belly, of course. This, however, makes it startlingly clear, which will hopefully make it easier for moms to quit bad habits. After all, you can't ignore what's staring you in the face!

Did you struggle to quit smoking while pregnant?

Image via Durham University

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