No Link Between Drinking Coffee In Pregnancy And Children's Later Behaviour, Says Study

13/07/2012 14:08 | Updated 22 May 2015
No link between drinking coffee in pregnancy and children's later behaviour, says studyJupiter

A new study has found that drinking caffeine during pregnancy does not lead to an increased risk of behavioural problems for children later in life.

Previously, medics have linked caffeine consumption in pregnancy with problems ranging from hyperactivity, lower brain weight and emotional problems, after carrying out research on animals. But studies on humans have failed to support these claims.

The latest study involved assessing the coffee intake during pregnancy of 3,400 women. The researchers then monitored the families until the children were six and asked both their mums and their teachers to complete questionnaires about their behaviour and emotional well being.

They concluded that their was no link between the maternal caffeine intake and hyperactivity and or inattention problems or emotional symptoms, conduct problems, or peer relationships.

The study concluded: "Present results give no indication to advise pregnant women to reduce their caffeine intake to prevent behavior problems in their children."

They did however find that those women who drank higher than average amounts of caffeine did have children with more relationship problems with their peers - but this finding was only apparent in women who also smoked.

However, De-Kun Li from the Kaiser Foundation who previously authored a study which linked caffeine to miscarriage told Forbes that it would be 'premature' to form any concrete conclusions from this new research, and 'certainly not about the safety of caffeine consumption in pregnancy, even in the context of children's behavior.'

What do you think from your own experience? Did you avoid coffee in pregnancy? Or have your usual cuppa?

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