Teenage smokers pay less attention

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London, Jan 3 (UNI) Parents whose children do not pay attention to them should keep an eye over their wards' smoking habits.

According to a recent research, smoking adversely affects teenagers' brains and their ability to listen to parents and teachers.

Nicotine hinders the development of nerve connections in the maturing adolescent brain. It generally affects the areas linked to brain pathways which send signals to the ear, and this is cited as a main reason to lack of concentration among the teenagers who smoke.

Even the smoking habit of mother during pregnancy affects the child in long run, the Daily Telegraph reported here.

The research found that both prenatal and adolescent exposure to nicotine/tobacco affected the structure of white matter in regions of the brain that relay signals to the ear.

Lead author of the study and associate professor of psychiatry and paediatrics at Yale University School of Medicine, Leslie Jacobsen said, ''Teenagers exposed to nicotine can hear normally, but their processing is deficient. The levels of disruption are significant.'' Exposure to nicotine may accelerate some aspects of development leading to inappropriate connections forming between neurons, Dr Jacobsen added.

UNI XC SG DB1350

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