Health news of note: Smoking Guns
Women who were exposed to tobacco smoking in utero are more likely to develop gestational diabetes when they became pregnant, new research shows. They were also more likely to be obese than the offspring of women who didn’t smoke during pregnancy.
…tobacco exposure could actually cause changes in the gene expression in the unborn child that could predispose them to later obesity or diabetes…
Although short-term detrimental effects of smoking on the individual and her offspring are well-known, such associations might extend into adulthood, making the incentive stronger for undertaking [preventive] measures, particularly as numbers in some countries point to an increase in daily smoking among young women.
Authors suggest that besides changes in gene expression, there also alterations in the regulation of appetite and satiety, as well as ” reported effects of prenatal nicotine exposure include a higher rate of death of the insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas and increased gene expression of transcription factors, triggering formation of adipocytes, which could be involved in the development of diabetes and obesity, respectively.”
My sister in Russia, continued to smoke throughout both of her pregnancies. According to her doctors, and it is in fact a common believe in Russia, quitting smoking while pregnant causes too much stress to the pregnant body, and so continuing to smoke is less harmful, then.
Nearly a third of children and adolescents screened in an emergency department program are at risk for suicide, and of these, 17% report knowledge of a gun in or around their home.
According to AAP (The American Academy of Pediatrics) 1 in 25 visits to pediatric trauma centers are due to gunshot wounds. It may be time for pediatricians to ask parents about guns in the house during child’s yearly checkups. If there is a gun in the house, is it in a safe place, under a lock and unloaded?
Is it really a doctor’s place to be asking about guns?
“Absolutely,” Thomas McInerny, MD, president of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), told Medscape Medical News. “It’s no different than talking to kids and their parents about wearing bicycle helmets, using seats belts, having a smoke detector in the house — those are all safety measures to try to keep children safe and healthy.”
I am sure some time in the near future pediatricians will start asking the question, but my wish is that pediatricians would actually have a chance to get to know their patience and their families better and perhaps that could be the best prevention.
To your health,