Saturday, March 22, 2008

Dads-to-be don't abstain during pregnancy

Published: March 21, 2008 at 3:37 PM

SEATTLE, March 21 (UPI) -- While many moms-to-be abstain from tobacco, marijuana and alcohol during pregnancy, dads-to-be don't get the message at all, a U.S. researcher says.

Lead authors Jennifer Bailey and Karl Hill of the University of Washington say that men's levels of binge drinking, daily smoking and marijuana use remains fairly stable before, during and after pregnancy.

The study, published in the journal Birth Issues in Perinatal Care, also found 77 percent of women cigarette smokers and 50 percent of the women who smoked marijuana used those substances at some time during pregnancy, while 38 percent of women cigarette smokers and 24 percent of marijuana users reported using those substances throughout their pregnancies.

"The months after childbirth are critical for intervening with mothers," Bailey said in a statement. "For example, many already have done the hard work of quitting smoking. We should support that effort so that they can continue as nonsmokers, however, we know if dad is smoking or drinking it is more likely that mom will resume smoking or drinking."

Data for the study came from the Seattle Social Development Project, which is tracking 808 Seattle children into adulthood.