Women know of all the various reasons why smoking during pregnancy is such a complete No-No: because kids can have birth defects, and because they may grow up with behavioral problems and attention deficit.

smoking in pregnancyAnd there is more – according to the new study published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, there is a longer term co-relation between smoking in pregnancy and later problems for the child. According to the study, there was a connection seen between smoking during pregnancy and eventual criminality in adult children.

The researchers looked at data of adults whose mothers smoked when they were pregnant with them and they found that women who smoked heavily during pregnancy (20 or more cigarettes per day) were likelier to have their adult children turn out criminal and to have an arrest record; as much as 30% more likely than children on non smokers. It was also seen that these adults were more likely to be repeat offenders.

The researchers examined women and their smoking habits between 1959 and 1966 when the detrimental impact of smoking on the fetus was not clearly known. Factors such as the education levels of parents and their own anti social behavior were adjusted before coming to these conclusions.