Teratogen Research Paper

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Teratogens I have been blessed with five very healthy children. I have never had to go through anything severe concerning my children's health. During the last thirteen years the worst I have ever dealt with is teething, runny noses, ear aches, and of course the wonderful "terrible two stage." My pregnancies all went very smooth, and I never had any complications during any of my deliveries. I was far from perfect when I was pregnant. I had an occasional cigarette now and then, drank caffeine once in a while, and I even smoked marijuana once. What harm could these things possibly do? A teratogen is any disease, drug, or other environmental agent that can harm a developing fetus causing deformities, blindness, brain damage, or even death. Here are a few examples of some teratogens: Tobacco: Babies that are exposed to cigarette smoke/tobacco tend to be small and premature, have respitory problems, and sometimes show intellectual difficulties or behavioral problems later in development. Smoking restricts blood flow to the fetus, which in turn reduces the levels of growth factors, oxygen, and nutrients that reach the fetus. The risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), in which a sleeping baby suddenly stops breathing and dies, also increases as the amount of smoking increases.…show more content…
The chemistry of the prenatal environment often determines whether an embryo or fetus survives or how it looks and functions at birth. A variety of teratogens can affect development, although the influence of teratogens varies. Affects are worst in the critical periods when organs are growing most rapidly, and affects are more serious with greater exposure to teratogens. Not all embryos or fetuses are equally affected by the same teratogen. By keeping up with new knowledge, people that are thinking about having children or are already expecting can do a lot more to increase the odds of their baby being born
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