A new study suggested dads who stress out about parenting could negatively effect their toddler's development.
The study involved 730 families and concluded that families in which the fathers experienced high levels of stress over parenting had sons with lower language skills at 3 years old than other families. Both girls and boys tended to score lower on cognitive tests, which involve skills such as learning, reasoning, and paying attention.
This study's findings add to a growing body of research explaining how fathers influence the development of their children. Most studies regarding kids' well being focus primarily on the mothers' influence, rather than the fathers'. More recent studies have begun looking into the influence of both parents or that of the father.
This study found that dads involved in their child's upbringing affect their preschoolers' emotional development and language skills, in addition to older children's risk for depression and behavioral problems.
Gender roles are shifting as times change. There are more fathers sharing responsibility for raising kids, as well as more fathers acting as stay-at-home parents. The study focused on lower-income couples in the United States, with a focus on their parenting related stress in particular. Participating families filled out a standard questionnaire for researchers to assess stress levels. They had to agree or disagree with statements such as "Sometimes I feel my child doesn't like me" or "I feel trapped…"
The study overall concluded the fathers' level of parenting stress influenced cognitive development and language development in young children. In addition, the study concluded kids more often had behavioral problems throughout their childhoods if the father experienced depression symptoms or was chronically stressed.
The researchers noted that the fathers' influenced seemed independent of the mothers; in other words, the fathers were not stressed because their wives were stressed.
The study established an association, not a cause-and-effect relationship, but nonetheless either parents' stress could influence a child's development. For example, if a parent's mind is racing, frantic, or busy, they may be less responsive to cues from their child, including words and behavior.
This study supports growing research on the importance of fathers in children's behavioral and cognitive development. In general, fathers can provide unique encouragement. For example, fathers are generally more likely to encourage young children to take risks, explore, and be clearer with their words.
This study underlines the importance of a father's wellbeing to the development of their child. As with many care-giving situations, it is very important to care for yourself in order to better care for your family.
A local Physical Education teacher has been working with UCLA on a study that encourages children to stay active during summer months while school is out.
Martin Wurmlinger is that physical education teacher and he is working with the University of California in Los Angeles’ Sound Body Sound Mind organization. He has stressed that “getting out and finding an activity that keeps [kids] moving and raises heart rate levels” is the most important thing a child can do to keep healthy during the summer months.
While the simple task of raising heart rate levels is important in Mr. Wurmlinger’s opinion he offers a five-pronged approach to maximize a child’s athletic performance. The five important areas to focus on are: muscle strength, heart endurance, muscle endurance, flexibility, and body composition.
There are various ways to tackle these areas of athletic performance.
To fight the summer heat Mr. Wurmlinger suggests that children exercise in a pool, if they have access to one. Swimming can activate more than one of these five core areas of athletic competency.
Another full-body exercise that the organization from UCLA suggests is the burpee. With these exercise your child will start in a standing position, squat into a plank position, then jump into the air from that plank. You can find out more how to do a burpee in THIS YouTube video.
Finally, one of Mr. Wurmlinger’s most unique ideas is to give your child a pedometer. You and your child should sit down at a map and find a location that is far way that your child might like to travel to. This could be Disney World, China, or maybe even around the world. Determine how far in miles these locations are from your front door and have your child try and travel this distance on his or her pedometer over the course of the summer, or even year. This gives children a goal, something to strive towards.
It’s easy to let your kids stare at the TV screen or play video games all summer long. This summer we suggest that you take some of the advice that the Sound Body Sound Mind organization have presented in this new study and get your kid moving.
To learn more about Mr. Wurmlinger’s project and the Sound Body Sound Mind organization you can find their website HERE.
Hundreds of people die in car wrecks every year because they don’t buckle up in the backseat, according to a new report.
There were almost 900 deaths in 2013 among kids 8 and older who were in the backseats and not wearing their seatbelt. According to the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), more than 400 of them would likely have survived if they had worn a seatbelt.
Sitting in the back seat and not wearing a seatbelt makes you about three times more likely to die in a wreck. Yet 32 states still do not have solid seatbelt laws for passengers in vehicle back seats.
Just 78 percent of adults who sit in the back seat wear a seatbelt, compared to 87 percent of adults in the front seat. Seatbelt use in fatal car crashes are 60 percent for rear passengers and 74 percent for front passengers, according to the study.
The GHSA emphasizes the need to wear your seatbelt regardless of which seat you’re in. Almost 42 million people in the United States drive 50 miles or more from home JUST for Thanksgiving. Also around Thanksgiving, there are more than 400 deaths from car accidents.
Seatbelts are there to protect passengers, and it’s important to use your seatbelt regardless of whether you are driving or sitting in a rear seat, as is common for families traveling together around holidays. Many think they are protected by the seatbacks in front of them when they’re in the back seat, but this is simply not the case.
Buckle up in every seat for every trip, no matter how far or near, front or rear. Convincing adults of this will necessitate a united effort among highway safety professionals and lawmakers alike. It will save lives, though, and be more than worthwhile.
According to the GHSA, seat belt use in states that require use in rear seats is at 83 percent compared to 74 percent in states that do not have such laws.
Labels: driving safety
Do you ever feel as if mosquitos just love you for some reason? Well scientists say this is due to much more than paranoia. Some people are naturally more appealing to mosquitos because of the chemicals and odors they secrete. Here is why you might be a favorite for feasting mosquitoes:
1. You’re sweating
You may be one of those hard core runners, who runs no matter how hot it is outside. Well beware of the bugs. The lactic acid that is released when you sweat attracts hungry mosquitos. When you sweat a lot during intense exercise, your rising body temperature is also attractive to mosquitos looking for a warm host. It is best to work out indoors during hot, buggy days.
2. You’ve got a bun in the oven
That’s right. If you’re pregnant, the mosquitos just can’t get enough of you. Mosquitoes are attracted to carbon dioxide. The female ones, the ones that bite us, even have specific receptors that help them discover the gas around them. When you are pregnant, especially in the final trimester, you exhale about 21% more carbon dioxide then the rest of us. That is why pregnant women experience about twice as many bug bites on average. Researchers believe that pregnant women may also release certain odors that are pleasing to insects, drawing them closer. Make sure to wear your bug repellent this summer.
3. You are drinking an iced cold beer
Beer is tasty to mosquitos and humans. In fact, studies in West Africa and Japan show that people who drank beer rather than water were much more attractive to mosquitoes. Make sure to protect against bites at those outdoor sporting events and concerts this summer.
4. You have the right kind of blood
That’s right, blood-sucking mosquitoes have a preference when it comes to blood type, and unfortunately for people with type O, it’s you. Apparently type O blood may have a certain odor that is particularly pleasing to a hungry mosquito, and you are her number one landing preference.
5. You have that special something
Studies that include identical twins have shown that certain genetic make-up can cause you to be more susceptible to bug bites. Some people naturally repel mosquitos because of their genes, while others might actually attract bugs just by being who they are, genetically.
The best way to avoid those pesky bites is to cover up. Wear long-sleeved clothing and apply bug spray that includes DEET to your exposed skin and over your clothes.
Gardeners love bee-friendly plants and herbs. Lemon Balm, officially called Melissa officinalis, is just such a bee charming herb that it is even nicknamed “Bee Balm.” Not only does lemon balm attract plant pollenating bees, it also has many health benefits and is rather tasty too.
This perennial, medicinal herb is plentiful in many a well-groomed garden, as it grows in most climates, is low maintenance, and spreads far and wide through its roots and seeds. Lemon balm thrives during the warmer part of the year, with leaves withering during winter months, and sprouting forth again in the spring.
To add a little Lemon Balm to your life, you can ask a local gardener friend, most of them have plenty to spare. Or you can easily buy some seeds or a plant at the garden store nearby. Lemon balm promises to make your garden and your tummy happy.
The herb is delicious, with a zesty, lemony flavor and can easily be added to any recipe or brewed to make tea. Some of the tried and true uses for lemon balm are remedies for common, everyday symptoms.
Its most well-known use is as a slight sedative, which can calm your nerves, but it has many other medicinal purposes as well. Lemon balm can help soothe digestive issues, gas, bloating, or an upset stomach. It can also help with premenstrual syndrome symptoms like menstrual cramps, anxiety and irritability. The herb also can soothe mild symptoms of depression and even headaches.
So what is the easiest way to get your daily dose of soothing lemon balm? Tea of course. Use fresh leaves from your plant, placing them in the bottom of your mug. Add hot water and let the leaves steep for a few minutes before you take a sip. There is no need to strain the leaves if you are using them fresh from the garden. If you don’t have a fresh plant, you can use dried leaves from the health food store, just make sure to strain them before you drink the mixture.
Another creative way to include lemon balm in your diet is to add it as a citrus, acidic herb to your salads. This lemony, tangy herb will replace your need for lemon or a vinegar flavor in your salad. It can also be used as a citrusy garnish for a desert or even blended up into a pesto or vegetarian pate. You can get creative with this delicious and helpful, bee attracting garden herb.