Smoking during pregnancy has been previously linked to autism after the child is born, but now, this bad habit has also been associated with attention deficit disorders and conduct problems, reports Science Daily.

Researchers from the University of Leicester used three previous studies in order to find out if there is a difference between children whose moms prenatally smoked and those whose moms did not. They also accounted for whether the children were raised by genetically related or unrelated guardians.

The results revealed that there is a strong link between prenatal smoking and conduct problems with kids. “Our findings suggest an association between pregnancy smoking and child conduct problems that are unlikely to be fully explained by postnatal environmental factors (i.e., parenting practices) even when the postnatal passive genotype-environment correlation has been removed," the authors explain.

Conduct problems refer to a set of psychological issues in children, which include behavioral, emotional, and social problems. In order to avoid these, it is a must for expectant mothers to quit smoking, and to avoid secondhand smoke as much as they can.

(Photo by My Huy Streetphotography via Flickr Creative Commons)

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