It's better to stop smoking if you are planning to have a baby.
A new study says that smoking men are more likely to have asthmatic children.
The new research has collected solid evidence to prove that father's smoking prior to conception can place his child at higher risk of developing asthma.
For the study, researchers included 13,000 people, who completed questionnaires related to smoking. Researchers focused mainly on the prevalence of smoking among parents before conception and the total years they smoked. They also collected information about those who decided to stop smoking before conceiving the baby and prevalence of asthma in children.
Smoking before conception was associated with an increased risk of non-allergic asthma in children. The asthma risk went up with an increase in the total number of years a man smoked and the age at which he started smoking, particularly if he started smoking before age 15. However, the study couldn't find any such negative effects associated with maternal smoking before pregnancy.
"This study is important as it is the first study looking at how a father's smoking habit pre-conception can affect the respiratory health of his children," Dr Cecile Svanes, from the University of Bergen, Norway, said in a news release.
"Given these results, we can presume that exposure to any type of air pollution, from occupational exposures to chemical exposures, could also have an effect. It is important for policymakers to focus on interventions targeting young men and warning them of the dangers of smoking and other exposures to their unborn children in the future."
The study has been presented at the European Respiratory Society (ERS) International Congress in Munich, on Monday.
Though maternal habits are considered most important for a baby, recent research shows that fathers also have an equal role to play.
Similar to the current study, a 2012 study links father's smoking before conception to DNA damage and cancer in children.
A team of Canadian researchers reported last December that father's folate deficiency increased risk of birth defects in children.
Another report in January has linked paternal obesity at conception to obesity in children. Similarly, studies have also linked father's obesity to cancer in offspring, smaller babies, decreased chances of pregnancy and paternal depression to behavioural problems in children.