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"Crack baby" is a term for a child born to a mother who used crack cocaine during her pregnancy. There remains some dispute as to whether cocaine use during pregnancy poses a threat to the fetus. One complicating factor is the smoking of cigarettes, because almost all crack users also smoke cigarettes. The official opinion of the National Institute on Drug Abuse of the United States warns about health risks while cautioning against stereotyping:
Many recall that "crack babies," or babies born to mothers who used crack cocaine while pregnant, were at one time written off by many as a lost generation. They were predicted to suffer from severe, irreversible damage, including reduced intelligence and social skills. It was later found that this was a gross exaggeration. However, the fact that most of these children appear normal should not be overinterpreted as indicating that there is no cause for concern. Using sophisticated technologies, scientists are now finding that exposure to cocaine during fetal development may lead to subtle, yet significant, later deficits in some children, including deficits in some aspects of cognitive performance, information-processing, and attention to tasks—abilities that are important for success in school.