We know that multivitamins during pregnancy may reduce a child’s risk of autism. Recent research suggests that, in addition, prenatal vitamins may lower the risk of autism in younger siblings of children with autism. Women who already had a child with autism and took prenatal vitamins during the first month of pregnancy had half the risk of autism with that sibling. Additionally, in children who did develop autism; early prenatal vitamin use was associated with less severe autism symptoms, as well as higher thinking and memory skills. All siblings of children with autism are at increased risk for autism themselves because of overlapping genetic and familial factors. The fact that prenatal vitamins may help to mitigate this risk is very encouraging.
Further research is required, but these findings further strengthen the recommendation that all women should take a prenatal vitamin prior to and during pregnancy. At Fertility Centers of New England, we encourage all of our patients to lead a healthy lifestyle in order to have the healthiest pregnancy possible. If you have questions about your or your partner’s fertility, please contact us today!