Those with vitamin D deficiency from birth to early childhood may be at 60 per cent higher risk of elevated systolic blood pressure between ages 6 and 18, says a study.
Systolic refers to the first or top number in a blood pressure reading. High systolic blood pressure readings increase the risk of cardiovascular disease even when diastolic blood pressure, the second number in a blood pressure reading, is controlled.
“Our findings raise the possibility that screening and treatment of vitamin D deficiency with supplementation during pregnancy and early childhood might be an effective approach to reduce high blood pressure later in life,” said lead author Guoying Wang, Assistant Scientist at Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, Maryland, US.
For the study, the researchers followed 775 children from birth to age 18 at the Boston Medical Center.
Low vitamin D levels were defined as less than 11 ng/ml (nanograms per millimetre) in cord blood at birth and less than 25 ng/ml in a child’s blood during early childhood.
Vitamin D is needed for the body to absorb calcium for strong bones. It is made by our bodies when we are exposed to sunlight and found in a few foods, such as eggs, salmon and fortified milk products. It is also available as a vitamin supplement. (IANS)
Dear parents, please take note. Kids who are mocked by parents are at a greater risk of becoming bullies and its victim too, researchers said, stressing that many bullies come from hostile, punitive and rejecting backgrounds.
According to experts, derisive behaviour is a unique form of parenting that increases the risk of adolescent children adopting inappropriate anger management strategies that increases their risk for peer difficulties.
“Constant criticism affects the self-esteem of a child, especially when done by parents. Children tend to feel inferior and lose their sense of confidence. This affects their relationship with parents, making them more vulnerable to various other forms of bullying that happen through their peers.
“Due to hesitation in seeking help, children end up enduring bullying. This has a long-term negative effect on their psyche and overall personality development,” Samir Parikh, Consultant Psychiatrist at Fortis Hospital in Delhi, told IANS.
Derisive parents use demeaning or belittling expressions that humiliate and frustrate the child, without any obvious provocation from the child. These parents respond to child engagement with criticism, sarcasm, put-downs, hostility and rely on emotional and physical coercion to obtain compliance.
Published in the Journal of Youth and Adolescence, the study in which researchers followed 1,409 children (aged 13-15 years) for three consecutive years, emphasized on the emotional underpinnings of peer difficulties.
It was found that derisive parenting fosters dysregulated anger in adolescent children. Increases in dysregulated anger, in turn, place adolescents at greater risk for bullying and victimization.
Dysregulated anger is indicative of difficulties regulating emotion, which typically results in negative emotions, verbal and physical aggression and hostility.
The behaviour of parents as well as other close family members towards children does have a lasting impact on their personality and mental development, said mental health expert Prakriti Poddar, Director at Poddar Foundation in Mumbai.
“Subjecting a child to insult, mockery or derision creates a wave of repressed anger and frustration in the child. Imagine a child telling a parent or another family member about an incident or about his/her understanding of a subject, and the parent responding by mocking or belittling the child! Now imagine, if this happens regularly. Not only will the child lose trust in the parent and stop confiding things, he/she will also grow into a vexed and confused personality,” Poddar told IANS.
“This child would not be confident about himself, will have repressed feelings of frustration and in a way will also start normalizing the behaviour of insulting of belittling others. This creates problems with peer adjustment and might lead the child to start victimizing or bullying others. kids develop in response to their environment, therefore, when their environment is toxic or negative, it breeds self-harm,” she added. (IANS)