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Smoking While Pregnant Endangers Hearing

Tuesday, 21 Mar 2017 04:01 PM Current | Bio | Archive

In "The Simpsons'" episode "The Last Temptation of Krusty," a less-than-graceful Homer decides he's going to be just like the outspoken clown and tell it like it is.

"Marge, you're getting a little fat around the old thighs," he says. Marge retorts. "Oh, knock it off, Homer."

Well, if you're pregnant and smoking — and according to a recent Centers of Disease Control and Prevention study, around 10 percent of pregnant women still smoke, even in their third trimester — we're gonna borrow a little wisdom from Marge, and tell you like it is: "Knock it off!"

When you smoke while pregnant — or inhale second- or even third-hand smoke residue — your fetus is shortchanged on placenta-derived oxygen while still ingesting many toxic chemicals.

The result? Poisoning your soon-to-be can cause premature birth or even infant death, and in a newborn it can trigger a rash of developmental problems.

But wait, there's more: Recent laboratory tests reveal that nicotine directly damages fetal development of auditory nerve signaling. Hearing impairment can lead to deficits in language and learning.

Other studies have linked smoking while pregnant with mental illness in offspring.

So if you smoke and you're pregnant (or even thinking about getting pregnant) join a quit-smoking support group. Nicotine patches and other replacement therapies aren't a good option while you're pregnant; you're still delivering nicotine to the fetus.

Your best choice? Cold turkey. And guess what? That can work, according to a study of pregnant women in the Annals of Internal Medicine. If you're not pregnant though, it's not the most effective way to knock it off.

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When you smoke while pregnant, your fetus is shortchanged on placenta-derived oxygen while still ingesting many toxic chemicals.
pregnancy, hearing, smoking, Dr. Oz
Tuesday, 21 Mar 2017 04:01 PM
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