Coffee, fires and DIY = pregnancy risks

Pregnant woman-270

The latest concerns for pregnant women are said to be renovating old properties, burning open fires and even drinking coffee.

The DIY risk comes in the form of lead released from old paintwork. The study suggests a burning a fire can put women at risk of pre-eclampsia and affect a child's intelligence or cause them to become hyperactive.

Researchers at Bristol University studied the blood samples of 4,000 women, examining the level of lead.

Lead concentrations were also affected by alcohol, coffee and pet dogs – but a coal fire was found to be the biggest factor.

They found levels were particularly high in women who were educated to degree level.

The researchers believe this group may be more affected because they are more likely to buy older homes and renovate them and be vulnerable to lead which can be released from skirting boards and floorboards that is stripped of original paint.

Another finding suggested having dogs as pets dogs could raise the level of lead in the blood by bringing in contaminated soil and dust from outside.

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