Friday February 21, 2020

Prenatal Smoking, Drinking Increases SIDS Risk; Says New Study

According to the researchers, these risks were in comparison to infants who were either not exposed to tobacco or alcohol during gestation or whose mothers quit tobacco or alcohol use by the end of the first trimester

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Effects of smoking
Excessive smoking can increase the chances of looking old as well. Pixabay

Children born to mothers who drank and smoked beyond the first three months of pregnancy have 12-fold increased risk for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), says a new study.

SIDS is the sudden, unexplained, death of an infant under one year of age. Many studies have shown that the risk of SIDS is increased by maternal smoking during pregnancy.

Some studies have also found that prenatal alcohol exposure, particularly from heavy drinking during pregnancy, can increase SIDS risk.

The findings, published in the journal The Lancet, provide a look at how SIDS risk is influenced by the timing and amount of prenatal exposure to tobacco and alcohol.

“Our findings suggest that combined exposures to alcohol and tobacco have a synergistic effect on SIDS risk, given that dual exposure was associated with substantially higher risk than either exposure alone,” said said first author Amy J Elliot from Avera Health Centre for Pediatric and Community in US.

For the findings, researchers followed the outcomes of nearly 12,000 pregnancies among women from two residential areas in Cape Town, South Africa; and five sites in the US.

men smoking
A Chinese man smokes in front of a pillar with a no smoking notice on display at a bus station in Beijing. VOA

The study sites were selected for their high rates of prenatal alcohol use and SIDS, and to include populations where the ethnic and socioeconomic disparities in SIDS remains understudied.

The researchers determined one-year outcomes for about 94 per cent of the pregnancies.

They found that 66 infants died during that time, including 28 SIDS deaths and 38 deaths from known causes.

Also Read: Marijuana Associated with Higher Risk of Heart Problems: Study

In addition to the almost 12-fold increased SIDS risk from combined smoking and drinking beyond the first trimester of pregnancy, they determined that the risk of SIDS was increased five-fold in infants whose mothers reported they continued smoking beyond the first trimester, and four-fold in infants whose mothers reported they continued drinking beyond the first trimester.

According to the researchers, these risks were in comparison to infants who were either not exposed to tobacco or alcohol during gestation or whose mothers quit tobacco or alcohol use by the end of the first trimester. (IANS)

Next Story

Know About the Side Effects of Using Cannabis

Does smoking marijuana affect your sperm count?

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Cannabis
Cannabis is by far the most widely cultivated, trafficked and abused illicit drug. Pixabay

Cannabis is by far the most widely cultivated, trafficked and abused illicit drug. Cannabis is a generic term used to denote the several psychoactive preparations of the plant Cannabis sativa. The major psychoactive constituent in cannabis is THC.

Dr Dushyant Nadar, Director & Head of Department, Urology & Renal Transplant, Fortis Hospital, Noida shares more information:

The geographical spread of those seizures is also global, covering practically every country of the world. About 147 million people, 2.5 per cent of the world population, consume marijuana (annual prevalence) compared with 0.2% consuming cocaine and 0.2 percent consuming opiates. The use of cannabis can cause some serious side effects.

Acute health effects of cannabis use

Marijuana impairs cognitive development (capabilities of learning), including associative processes Marijuana impairs psychomotor performance in a wide variety of tasks, such as motor coordination, divided attention, and operative tasks of many types. Human performance on complex machinery can be impaired for as long as 24 hours after smoking as little as 20 mg of THC in weed. There is an increased risk of motor vehicle accidents among persons who drive when intoxicated by weed.

Cannabis
Cannabis impairs cognitive development (capabilities of learning). Pixabay

Chronic health effects of cannabis use

Selective impairment of cognitive functioning which include the organization and integration of complex information involving various mechanisms of attention and memory processes.

Prolonged use may lead to greater impairment, which may not recover with cessation of use, and which could affect daily life functions; Development of a drug dependence syndrome characterized by a loss of control over cannabis use is likely in chronic users; Weed use can exacerbate schizophrenia in affected individuals; Epithelial injury of the trachea and major bronchi is caused by long-term ,marijuana smoking; Airway injury, lung inflammation, and impaired pulmonary defense against infection from persistent cannabis consumption over prolonged periods; Heavy cannabis consumption is associated with a higher prevalence of symptoms of chronic bronchitis and a higher incidence of acute bronchitis than in the non-smoking cohort

Cannabis
Cannabis use can exacerbate schizophrenia in affected individuals. Pixabay

Effect of cannabis on male infertility

Infertility affects 10-15% of couples, and it has been estimated that a male factor is responsible in approximately half of these cases. Male infertility is diagnosed with the analysis of several semen parameters, such as the number of total sperm, sperm motility, and percentage of sperm cells with a normal morphology. It is known that marijuana, the commonest recreational drug of abuse, has adverse effects on male reproductive physiology. Its use is associated with impotence, decreased testosterone plasma level, impairment of spermatogenesis, production of spermatozoa with abnormal morphology, reduction of sperm motility and viability and, more recently, with the occurrence of non-seminoma germ cell tumors.

The biological mechanisms by which marijuana affects semen quality and hormone levels are not fully known. The active component of marijuana, ?9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), binds to the human cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2. CB1 receptors are found in the anterior pituitary but have also been identified in the testis, vas deferens, and human sperm cells, leading to a dose-dependent decreased sperm motility and decreased mitochondrial activity in spermatozoa when activated.

Also Read- Researchers Develop Smart Jumpsuit to Spot Neurological Issues in Infants

This makes it possible for marijuana to affect hormone levels and spermatogenesis, as well as the mature sperm cells. A study found that men who used marijuana have an unhealthier lifestyle and health behavior, are often smokers, consume more alcohol, had a higher caffeine intake, were more likely to have had a sexually transmitted disease, and were more likely to have used recreational drugs other than marijuana. (IANS)