Paracetamol use during pregnancy linked to childhood ADHD, autism symptoms: Study – 5 tips for baby’s health

Paracetamol during pregnancy linked to childhood ADHD, autism symptoms: Study - 5 tips for baby's health

Paracetamol during pregnancy linked to childhood ADHD, autism symptoms: Study – 5 tips for baby’s health | Photo Credit: Pixabay&nbsp

Key Highlights

  • Pregnancy is a delicate time for both the mother and the child

  • Unhealthy habits during pregnancy may cause long-term effects on the baby

  • Mismanaged medications may lead to unprecedented health risk on the baby’s health

A study published in the European Journal of Epidemiology called “Prenatal and postnatal exposure to acetaminophen in relation to autism spectrum and attention-deficit and hyperactivity symptoms in childhood: Meta-analysis in six European population-based cohorts”, paracetamol intake of mothers during pregnancy to Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and autism symptoms in childhood. Over 70,000 children in six European cohorts were a part of the study. The six cohorts included in the study were Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC), Danish National Birth Cohort (DNBC), Gene and Environment: Prospective Study on Infancy in Italy (GASPII), Generation R Study, INMA (including four subcohorts), and Mother-Child Cohort in Crete (RHEA).

Here is what the authors say

It was found in the study that the exposure of children to paracetamol (acetaminophen) before birth were 19 per cent more likely to develop ASC symptoms and 21 per cent more likely to develop ADHD symptoms as compared to the children who were not. 

Silvia Alemany, lead author of the study said, “We also found that prenatal exposure to paracetamol affects boys and girls in a similar way, as we observed practically no differences.”

Jordi Sunyer, the last author of the study said, “Considering all the evidence on the use of paracetamol and neurological development, we agree with previous recommendations indicating that while paracetamol should not be suppressed in pregnant women or children, it should be used only when necessary,”.

Tips for pregnant women

Here are some ways in which you can ensure your baby’s health:

  1. Taking naps is a great way of relaxing the body. Pregnant women may feel low on energy due to the hormonal changes they go through during pregnancy. Therefore, naps may help restore these levels and keep the body and the baby healthy.
  2. Pregnant women may feel dehydrated more often, therefore proper hydration must be ensured.
  3. Excessive consumption of caffeine must be avoided as it can harm the baby.
  4. Pregnant women must stay away from first and second-hand smoking at all costs.
  5. Exercising can help improve the health of the mother by boosting mood and easing pain. However, hit intensity workouts must be refrained from.

Disclaimer: Tips and suggestions mentioned in the article are for general information purpose only and should not be construed as professional medical advice. Always consult your doctor or a dietician before starting any fitness programme or making any changes to your diet.