Scientists, using 4D ultrasound scans, have shown the harmful effects of smoking during pregnancy. Unborn babies appear to grimace in the womb when their mother lights up.
The researchers are hoping the images will encourage pregnant women who are struggling to give up smoking, because it heightens the risk of premature birth, respiratory problems and even cot death.
The Telegraph writes that Dr Nadja Reissland has studied moving 4D scan images and recorded thousands of tiny movements in the womb. 4 out of the 20 mothers she monitored in the James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough, smoked an average of 14 cigarettes a day.
After studying their scans at 24, 28, 32 and 36 weeks, she noticed 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.
If you smoke it’s best to quit before you get pregnant. Smoking not only impacts pregnancy but stops women conceiving.
Studies have that smoking reduces sperm count and harms egg quality. It also hastens the menopause and increases the dangers of premature birth and the need for caesarean sections.
Mothers, I hope this article will make you thing twice before you light up again!