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This 2 page Class Notes was uploaded by Janiese Northern on Friday January 22, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSY 221 at Western Illinois University taught by Mary McGuire in Winter 2016. Since its upload, it has received 14 views. For similar materials see Psychology of child development in Psychlogy at Western Illinois University.
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Date Created: 01/22/16
Prenatal Environment Influences The term teratogens refers to any environmental agent that causes damage during the prenatal period. Dose the larger doses over longer time periods usually have more negative effects. Heredity the genetic makeup of the mother and the developing organism plays an important role. Some individuals are better able than others to withstand harmful environments. Age the effects of teratogens vary with age of the organism at time of exposure. In the period of the zygote, before implantation, teratogens rarely have any impact. The embryonic period Is the time when serious defects are most likely to occur because the foundations for all body parts are being laid down. The fetaleriod, teratogenic damage is usually minor. Prescription and nonprescription drugs Prescription drugs such as thalidomide, produced gross deformities of the embryos developing arms and legs, less frequently, damage to the ears, heart, kidneys, and genitals, Diethylstilbrestrol DES, showed unusually high rates of cancer of the vagina, malformations of the uterus and infertility, Accutane results in eye, ear, skull, brain, heart, and immune system abnormalities. Antidepressants are linked to increased risk of premature delivery and birth complications. Illegal drugs Babies born to users of cocaine, heroin, or methadone are at risk for a wide variety of problems, including prematurity, low birth weight, physical defects, breathing difficulties, and death at or around the time of birth. Infants are born drug addicted. They are often feverish and irritable and have trouble sleeping, and their cries are abnormal shrill and piercing. Heroin and methadone exposed infants are less attentive to the environment than nonexposed babies, and their motor development is slow. Evidence on cocaine suggests that some prenatal exposed babies develop lasting problems. Several studies report preceptual, motor, attention, memory, language, and impulse control problems that persist into the preschool and school years. Nonexposed babies, cocaine exposed babies show gesture stress reactivity, as indicated by a more rapid rise in saliva concentration of cortisol to emotionally arousing events. Researchers have linked prenatal Marijuana exposure to smaller head size; to attention, memory, and academic achievement difficulties; to impulsivity and over activity and to depression as well as anger and aggression in childhood and adolescence. Overall the effects of illegal drugs are far less consistent than the impact of tobacco and alcohol.
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