Men who Smoke could Give Birth to Children with Asthma, Finds News Study

By  ,  Onlymyhealth editorial team
Sep 09, 2014

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Smoking And PregnancyA new study has revealed that men who are smokers can pose serious threat to their unborn child’s health even if they quit years before the birth.

The researchers from Norway found that a baby can be at a higher risk of asthma if the father is a smoker before they were conceived.

This finding acted as an evidence for the theory which suggests that poor health can be found in a father’s sperm or in a mothers’ egg.

An Australian research that was published earlier this year showed that drinking, smoking and unhealthy eating habits can put a child’s health in danger many years before it is conceived.

Problems caused by lifestyle changes can be passed on to the next generation making the child
`pre-programmed’ for a poor health.

The Australian researchers wished to re-ascertain that `parenting starts before conception’.

This new research that was presented at the European Respiratory Society (ERS) International Congress in Munich became the first ever study in humans to find a link between a father’s smoking habits before conception and child’s asthma.

In this study, over 13,000 men and women were analysed with help of a questionnaire.

During the study, researchers analysed the link in both mother and father and checked the number of years a person had smoked before conception, the occurrence of asthma in children and whether it was true that the parent had quit smoking before the baby was conceived.

The results of the study showed that non-allergic asthma was more common in children with a father who smoked before conception.

In cases where the father smoked before the age of 15 there was an increased risk of asthma in the child. Also, the longer the father smoked the greater was the risk of the child developing asthma.

However, there was no link found between the mother’s smoking before conception and a child’s asthma.

Dr Cecile Svanes from the University of Bergen, Norway told that the men must be cautioned by the policymakers about how their bad lifestyle could damage the health of their children.

She added `this study is important as it is the first study looking at how a father's smoking habit pre-conception can affect the respiratory health of his children.

'Given these results, we can presume that exposure to any type of air pollution, from occupational exposures to chemical exposures, could also have an effect.’

‘It is important for policymakers to focus on interventions targeting young men and warning them of the dangers of smoking and other exposures to their unborn children in the future’.

Image courtesy: Getty Images

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