Smoking moms and juvie criminals


Moms who smoke heavily while pregnant run the risk of having juvenile delinquents as children. It’s true according to a study published online at the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

It appears that one thing repeat offenders have in common is a mom who was a heavy smoker while she was pregnant with them. Even after taking into account the range of family and social factors, mental health, deprivation of all types likely to influence behaviors, the research still indicated smoking as a factor contributing to young criminals.

The authors base their findings on just under 4000 adults aged between 33 and 40, who participated in the Collaborative Perinatal Project. This is a long term tracking study on prevailing factors during pregnancy and birth. In the year 2000 when all the babies in the study hit 33 years old, a summary was collected and data compared.

The findings showed that children whose mothers had smoked heavily, more than a pack a day, were the most likely to have a criminal record as an adult, a greater than 30% increased chance of being arrested. The statistic was true for men and women.

“While we cannot definitively conclude that maternal smoking during pregnancy is a causal risk factor for adult criminal offending, the current findings do support a modest causal relationship,” conclude the authors of the study.

Source: JECH, ScienceDaily


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