If you need yet another reason not to smoke while you're pregnant, here it is. A new study has found that the children of women who smoke while pregnant are more likely to have behavioral problems later in life. Ahem, Kim Zolciak, you may want to pay attention.
According to Reuters, while previous research has found a link between the two, they couldn't rule out other things like genetics or parenting techniques when it came to the increased risk for behavior problems. This study, however, did by also comparing adoptive mothers to children raised by biological mothers. They found that smoking was directly related to behavior issues like getting in fights as well as attention problems, between the ages of 4 to 10.
While researchers caution it can't prove smoking caused the behavior problems, it's some pretty strong evidence that it does. Researcher Dr. Theodore Slotkin of Duke University Medical Center stated in an accompanying article published in JAMA Psychiatry:
We now know that the consequences of prenatal tobacco exposure are not restricted to perinatal risk, but rather extend to the lifespan and affect the quality of life for countless individuals.
If the thought of badly behaved kids someday is still not enough to convince you to try to quit smoking while pregnant, there's also the increased risk of miscarriage, stillbirth, premature birth, and the chance of your baby developing lung problems. It's not easy to quit, but if ever there was a reason to do so, it's your baby's health.
It's also one more piece of evidence that shows just how much of our children's lives are being affected before they're even born. The job of a pregnant woman is so incredibly important. The choices we make each day of our pregnancies really do matter for the rest of our kids' lives, so we should make them with care.
Do you/did you smoke while pregnant?
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