Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Prenatal Caffeine Doesn't Raise Risk of Problem Behavior in Kids

Whether a child exhibits problem behaviors at age 5 has nothing to do with a mother’s intake of caffeine during pregnancy, said a report in the August Pediatrics. Researchers led by Eva Loomans, M.Sc., of the Department of Psychology at Tilburg University in the Netherlands, asked 8,202 women about their consumption of coffee, caffeinated tea, and cola at 16 weeks into their pregnancies. Then, when their children were age 5, parents and teachers rated overall problem behavior and problems with emotions, conduct, hyperactivity/inattention, and peer relationships, as well as prosocial behavior.

After adjusting for potentially confounding demographic, psychological, and medical factors, the researchers found that, “Caffeine intake was not associated with a higher risk for behavior problems or with suboptimal prosocial behavior.” Those results indicate that pregnant women should not be advised to reduce their caffeine intake solely to prevent behavior problems in their children.

To read more about prenatal risks, see Psychiatric News here.

(Image: Kostrez/


The content of Psychiatric News does not necessarily reflect the views of APA or the editors. Unless so stated, neither Psychiatric News nor APA guarantees, warrants, or endorses information or advertising in this newspaper. Clinical opinions are not peer reviewed and thus should be independently verified.