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Teratogens are substances in the environment that cross the placenta to damage the fetus. Mothers are usually exposed to them during pregnancy. They cause major damage during the embryonic stage. Teratogens also affect the still developing brain. The damage done depends on the amount of dosage taken in toxic substances. They damage unpredictably. There are many different types of teratogens. Medications, recreational drugs, stress and infectious disease are some examples of teratogens. Medications such as antibiotics, thalidomide, anti-seizure drugs, anti-psychotic drugs and antidepressants are very harmful for fetus development. Streptomycin is an antibiotic most commonly used to treat tuberculosis, was linked to causing hearing loss in children. According to about kids’ health website, thalidomide was discovered in the 1960s to treat morning sickness, when taken by pregnant women, it caused total or partial absence of the arms or legs in babies. Furthermore, anti-seizure medication have been linked to delayed development in infancy. Anti-psychotic drugs raise the risk of the baby developing heart problems. Lastly, anti-depressants in the third trimester of pregnancy can cause temporary jitteriness, excessive crying and eating difficulties in newborns. Antibiotics should be avoided during the sensitive stage of fetal development. Mothers should have a very thorough conversation with their physicians on effects of antibiotics, prescribed to them, on their babies. Recreational drugs such as cocaine and methamphetamines are very dangerous for pregnant women. Cocaine is linked to causing miscarriages, growth retardation, and behavior problems. Similarly, methamphetamines are linked to causing miscarriages and growth retardation. Recreational drugs should be avoided at all times during pregnancy. According to Belsky (2012), a huge collection of studies propose…...

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