4D ultrasound scans show what smoking does to an unborn baby during pregnancy

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Smoking and pregnancy: Incredible images of foetus holding its face show how babies exposed to cigarettes may have delayed development.

New ultrasound pictures show how babies of mothers who smoke during pregnancy touch their mouths and faces much more than babies of non-smoking mothers.

Foetuses normally touch their mouths and faces much less the older and more developed they are.

Experts said the scans show how smoking during pregnancy can mean the development of the baby’s central nervous system is delayed.

Doctors have long urged pregnant women to give up cigarettes because they heighten the risk of premature birth, respiratory problems and even cot death.

Now researchers believe they can show the effects of smoking on babies in the womb.

Dr Nadja Reissland, of Durham University, used 4-D ultrasound scan images to record thousands of tiny movements in the womb.

She monitored 20 mothers attending the James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough, four of whom smoked an average of 14 cigarettes a day.

After studying their scans at 24, 28, 32 and 36 weeks, she detected that foetuses whose mothers smoked continued to show significantly higher rates of mouth movement and self-touching than those carried by non-smokers.

Foetuses usually move their mouths and touch themselves less as they gain more control the closer they get to birth, she explained.

All the babies in her study were born healthy, and were of normal size and weight.

Dr Reissland, who has an expertise in studying foetal development, thanked the mothers who took part in her study, especially those who smoked.

Music by Kevin MacLeod /Finding the Balance/
http://incompetech.com/music/royalty-free/

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Comments

Cipriana Guardado says:

A child is a gift and a pleasure to have and for irresponsible careless women to pick up something like a cigarette and poison their own child is a worthless piece of s*** my baby right now is only one year old and my oldest daughter is 12 I would never think of ever hurting them in any means necessary not with a cigarette and that was a blunt object not with anything the only thing that I will hurt them with is love I will always love my kids and if it comes down to a woman and her child the woman should be woman enough to drop all drugs alcohol any bad habits that will harm your child and say no. and if their mom didn't smoke why should they smoke and do that to their child these b**** make me sick

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