Smoking Cigarette Around Children is More Dangerous Than You Realise!

  • 14 May 2019

New studies show the extent of harm that smoke from a cigarette can cause to children.

A study conducted by the Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology in Japan showed how the exposure of cigarette smoke to infants and toddlers prenatally and postnatally places them at a higher risk of hearing impairment.

In the study of 50,734 children aged three years who were born between 2004 and 2010, 3.8% were exposed to cigarette smoke only during pregnancy; 15.2% were exposed to it in the uterus due to the mothers' past smoking habits; 3.9% were exposed only to second-hand smoke at 4 months old; and 0.9% was exposed to tobacco smoke during the entire pregnancy up to the age of 4 months old.

The infants who were exposed to smoking during the entire pregnancy had a 68% increased risk; while the ones who were exposed to it during the pregnancy and to second hand smoke up to the age of 4 months old had a 2.4 times increased risk. The chances of losing their hearing at the age of three were 4.6%.

"Although public health guidelines already discourage smoking during pregnancy and in front of children, some women still smoke during pregnancy and many young children are exposed to second-hand smoke," said senior author Koji Kawakami.

"This study clearly shows that preventing exposure to tobacco smoke during pregnancy and postnatally may reduce the risk of hearing problems in children. The findings remind us of the need to continue strengthening interventions to prevent smoking before and during pregnancy and exposure to second-hand smoke in children", Kawakami concluded.

The study appears in the journal Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology.

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