A recent study in Denmark shows that chances of ADHD increased among children whose mothers took acetaminophen during pregnancy. While this is a correlation it is not necessarily a case of causation.
When females in developed nations feel the onset of fever or pain during pregnancy they often take acetaminophen. This medication is often sold as the popular brand known as Tylenol and contains paracetamol. While up until now it had been taken for granted that the drug was harmless and had few side effects, the most up-to-date evidence says otherwise.
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A Danish study followed thousands of families especially mothers and their children. Those moms who took the most acetaminophen during the three trimesters of their pregnancy period had children who later on displayed ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) and HKD (hyperkinetic disorder) symptoms. This was seen to increase in case of those mothers who took huge quantities of the drug.
The drug seemed to cross the placenta membrane and adversely affect the fetus’s neurology. And the prescriptions of Ritalin for ADHD and HKD that these mothers had to get for their children seven years later were a sad and eye-opening result.
"This study alone should not change practice. Nonetheless, it highlights some important messages," wrote Miriam Cooper, a psychologist at Cardiff University School of Medicine, in an editorial accompanying the study. The findings "underlie the importance of not taking a drug’s safety during pregnancy for granted," Cooper said.
Acetaminophen has already been known as an endocrine disruptor. It seriously messes up your hormones. And the prenatal dose of such a drug caused the brains of the infants in the womb to become addicted.
The rush of the medicine felt like a lock and key neurotransmitter system that created hyperactive children and kids that were different from the normal variety. The jury is still out on the study since it establishes correlation and not causation. But the medical profession has issued a warning to pregnant mothers to avoid the habitual use of Tylenol and other NSAIDs.
Instead they ought to rely on alternative non-invasive methods of relief such as massage and baths. A fever can be brought down by cold sponging. Pain meanwhile may be cured by acupressure and acupuncture. Even biofeedback and autosuggestion are valid ameliorative techniques that can be applied here.