Affects of Nicotine and Drugs Start in the Womb



Source: Ivanhoe Broadcast News
Date: June 13, 2008
Author: SOURCE: SLEEP 2008, 22nd Annual Meeting Of The Associated Professional Sleep Societies, mthomas@ivanhoe.com

A child who’s been exposed to drugs in the womb is starting off with two strikes when it comes to a lifetime of healthy sleep.

According to a new study, children exposed to cocaine, nicotine, marijuana, alcohol, opiates or some combination of those are more likely to have sleep problems from birth that stay with them. It also shows nicotine to be the most harmful.

The study, which was authored by Kristen Stone, PhD, of Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island indicated that nicotine had a unique effect and caused sleep problems above and beyond the other substances.

The research also shows that early sleep problems predict later ones. “Studying the effects of prenatal drug exposure on sleep may provide clues regarding how drugs affect the developing brain, and may explain some of the effects on prenatal drug exposure on other outcomes such a behavior and attention,” said Stone.

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