Health experts strongly recommend pregnant women to prefer not smoking. A latest study on pregnant ladies has clearly shown that how adversely smoking habit of the mothers affect their unborn babies in womb.
The researchers at the Durham and Lancaster Universities in the UK carried an in-depth study of high-definition 4-D ultrasound scans and came across glaring exposures about the harmful effect of cigarette smoking on the fetuses of mothers.
According to the researchers, the 4-D scans showed fetuses of those smoking mothers had more unusual movements of mouth than expected in womb.
Brian Francis, co-author of the study and a professor at Lancaster University, said, “Technology means we can now see what was previously hidden, revealing how smoking affects the development of the fetus in ways we did not realize. This is yet further evidence of the negative effects of smoking in pregnancy.”
The researchers hypothesized that those increased mouth movements may be linked with the functioning of central nervous system, which is responsible for controlling locomotion.
The researchers also observed that the smoking mothers’ fetuses didn’t have a normal developmental process in comparison to those fetuses whose mothers didn’t smoke.
Previous research works have also suggested that babies’ exposure to cigarette smoke in the womb is closely linked with delayed development in speech skills in infants.
For the study, the research group analysed 80 4-D ultrasound scans of 20 fetuses growing healthy in the womb. Four of the fetuses were carried by those women who were engaged in smoking an average of 14 cigarettes a day during pregnancy. The remaining 16 mothers were non-smokers.
The scans were taken at four different times by the researchers between 24 and 36 weeks of pregnancy. It was found that smoking during maternity was closely linked to greater mouth and touch movements by the fetus.
The researchers, however, expressed need for future in-depth studies and also research work on the role of fathers’ smoking behaviors in the development of fetuses.
The findings of the study were published in the journal Acta Paediatrica.