A recent study has linked the development of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children to mothers who smoked during their pregnancy.
Researchers from the Denmark’s Aarhus University released the study via the Pediatrics journal on July 21. Dr. Jin Liang Zhu, an epidemiology assistant professor in the university and the lead author of the study, said that smoking has long been known to be a factor for pregnancy-related complications and a number of abnormalities in infants. This time, the new study focuses on ADHD as one of the risks of smoking while pregnant.
According to Zhu via a news release, components of cigarette smoke may cause abnormal brain development in the fetus. Some of the harmful chemicals include nicotine, as well as carbon monoxide as a by-product of the smoke.
However, the study does not discount the possibility of other factors that may have caused the link between children’s ADHD and their mothers who smoke. For one, members of families with ADHD patients were found to have more likelihood to engage in smoking, hence the higher probability of mothers to light a cigarette.