In spite of the wide spread campaign on the ills of smoking and drinking during pregnancy, a new study has found that more than 40 percent of expectant mothers continue to indulge in drinking and smoking when pregnant.
The study was conducted by researchers from Australian Institute of Family Studies who analyzed the births of more than 10,000 babies since 2004 and found that more than 38 percent of the mothers drank when they were pregnant while over 17 percent smoked.
The researchers found that older mothers were more likely to drink during pregnancy with around 44 percent of mothers over 30 years of age drinking at some point of time compared to 20 percent of mothers under 25 years.
Lead researcher Dr Ben Edwards once again said that drinking or smoking to alcohol has been proven to be harmful for the unborn child. "High levels of alcohol consumption in early pregnancy have been shown to be associated with severe outcomes for the baby although there has been less consensus on whether low to moderate alcohol consumption is dangerous during pregnancy", he said.