Expecting mothers, take note! Here’s how exposure to smoke during pregnancy can harm your baby

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New Delhi: Tobacco smoking during pregnancy is related to many effects on health and reproduction, in addition to the general health effects of tobacco.

Numerous studies have shown that tobacco use is a significant factor in miscarriages among pregnant smokers and pregnant women exposed to smoke, and that it contributes to a number of other threats to the health of the fetus. Carbon monoxide in tobacco smoke can keep the developing baby from getting enough oxygen.

However, a new study has revealed that while exposure to smoke during pregnancy can cause birth defects, the effects can linger long after birth as well.

Recently, a research found that smoke exposure can lead to asthma risks too.

The team conducted a study on 376 newborns and obtained detailed information from parents about smoking exposure during pregnancy and in the home at three and 15 months of age.

Data for demographics, wheezing, and asthma were obtained from yearly questionnaires up to age six. Lead author Dr Philip Pattemore from the University of Otago Christchurch, in New Zealand said hair nicotine increased with number of smokers, daily cigarettes smoked at home and was also strongly associated with smoking in pregnancy.

Although overall the hair nicotine levels in the participants were relatively low, higher levels of hair nicotine were associated with increased risk of wheeze and, though not significant, of asthma at 15 months of age.

However, at older ages the associations were non-significant. The research appears in journal of Pediatric Pulmonology.

(With ANI inputs)

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