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Smoking pregnant mothers don't produce children with criminal minds - new Swedish research show
Wednesday, 26 December 2012
Unlike past research, which had suggested that, women who smoke during
pregnancy often have children who fall into criminality, a new Swedish
study from Karolinska Institutet, (KI), has found the contrary.
The study suggest that it is not the smoking itself that make the
children to become criminals, but that there are genetic factors that
are responsible. Others also point to social problems such as
deprivation that could be copied by children who have known nothing
better outside their crime infested area where they have grown up.
Speaking to radio Sweden, Professor Paul Lichtenstein of KI said "In
this particular study we have found that smoking during pregnancy
causes not so much long term effects in children, it does not cause
addiction, it does not cause crime. Without the links that exist due to
genetic predisposition that is inherited for generations, there is not
connection with smoking".
Previous studies, including those from Harvard University, have shown
that women who smoke at least one pack of cigarettes a day during
pregnancy pose greater risk to their children ending up involved in
crime than if the mother is smoke-free.
Now scientists at Karolinska Institutet, KI, have studied this theory
and found that it is not the smoking itself that causes the
criminality, but genetic associations in their family that have an
impact on whether children become criminals. The study was carried out
on some 206 000 Swedes.
"The most likely interpretation is that it is because being prone to
smoke is partly hereditary, and the genes that affect susceptibility
also influence drug abuse and crime in their children. So it's really
just genetic factors," says Paul Lichtenstein to radio Sweden.
It is known that smoking during pregnancy can cause low birth weight
and sudden infant death syndrome. But Jerzy Sarnecki, professor in
criminology, who has researched much about why some people become
criminals, says that one must also take into account social factors.
"Of course there are genetic background factors, but there are also a
lot of social forces and so we should focuse on social science
research, - we know that people with social problems are quite
often children who inherit some of the social problems," says Jerzy
by Scancomark.com Team