You smoke and you're going to be a dad? Congratulations for your future fatherhood! This article explains the effects of smoking, especially passive smoking, on a child.
August 5, 2020
Many people know that a pregnant woman must stop smoking during her pregnancy. This idea of the harmfulness of tobacco for the unborn child is widely understood. That is why many women stop smoking when they are pregnant. But what about the father? Why is it important that the father stop smoking? We don't talk a lot of this issue as if there is no danger in conceiving a child while smoking.
A pioneering study on this subject was carried out by the team of Dr Julian Laubenthal, from the School of Life Sciences at the University of Bradford in the UK, who collected blood and sperm from fathers during the period of conception, and the blood from babies at birth.
Then, the team performed DNA analysis on these samples to detect changes in genes related to cancer risk. The results of these analyses speak for themselves: the researchers found alterations in the DNA of babies whose fathers smoked.
Thus, the damage caused by cigarette smoke could be transmitted from father to child. This confirms previous research on this subject. In fact, this transmission occurs through the altered cells in the father's sperm. This is why, according to Dr. Julian Laubenthal, men must be aware of the need to stop smoking before conception. Indeed, it takes three months for sperm to mature.
This result is confirmed by a study published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology.It confirms that the risk of congenital heart defects is increase for newborns whose father smoke. Indeed, congenital heart disease is the leading cause of death, affecting 8 out of every 1,000 babies born in the world.
" "Future fathers should quit smoking" said Dr. Jiabi Qin, author of a study from the Xiangya School of Public Health at Central South University in Changsha, China. "Fathers are a major source of second-hand smoke for pregnant women, which appears to be even more harmful to unborn children than women who smoke themselves."
It was also the first study that examine smoking at different stages of pregnancy and the risk of congenital heart defects. Women's exposure to second-hand smoke posed a risk to their offspring at all stages of pregnancy, and even before becoming pregnant.
Thus, it has been shown that the father's use of tobacco carries risks before and after the child's conception. This is why, aware of these risks, future fathers are strongly advised to get rid of their tobacco addiction.
Are you about to become a parent and want to quit smoking? Here are few tips to help you in this process:
You can find more advice on how to prepare yourself to quit smoking on our blog article.
Guidelines for a tobacco-free pregnancy
Between the cigarette and your child, the decision is simple and final: Farewell tobacco! If your pregnancy provides you the motivation you need, be sure of one thing: it will be tough struggle. This is why Kwit proposes a guideline for a tobacco-free pregnancy.