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Quitting smoking while pregnant ups odds of happy child

Giving up smoking while pregnant may boost the chances of giving birth to a child with a positive disposition.

A study of 18,000 UK babies has found that mums who kicked the habit had the most easy going infants compared not just with smokers but non smokers as well.

Temperament was measured across a validated scale, designed to pick up positive mood, receptivity to new things and regular sleep and eating patterns.

Heavy smokers had the most difficult children, scoring the lowest for positive mood.

It is suggested that pregnant smokers not only pass on harmful chemicals to their unborn children but traits and behaviours associated with smoking.

The study authors add however that women who give up smoking during pregnancy often relapse after birth.

British Medical Journal