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When pregnant women are feeling anxious, the stress may have an effect on their babies' health, too. Hi, I'm Dr. Cindy Haines, host of HealthDay TV.
Evidence is growing that anxiety and stress in pregnant women can have harmful effects on their babies' development. A new study in the journal Pediatrics sheds more light on the possible effects of stress during pregnancy.
In the study, 174 women with normal pregnancies answered questionnaires during their third trimester about their anxiety and stress. They also provided saliva samples so the researchers could measure their levels of cortisol, a hormone that points to increased stress. After the babies were born, the mothers reported their health problems for a year.
The researchers found that anxiety and stress in the pregnant women were linked to more general illnesses, respiratory problems, and skin problems in the babies.