Physical Activity in Early Childhood Affects Future Cardiovascular Health

It's important to start any kind of preventative measures early

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Physical Activity, Childhood, Cardiovascular Health
The study found that physical activity in toddlers as young as three years old benefits blood vessel health. Pixabay

Physical activity in early childhood may have an impact on cardiovascular health later in life, according to a study.

Published in the journal Pediatrics, the study found that physical activity in toddlers as young as three years old benefits blood vessel health, cardiovascular fitness and is key to the prevention of early risk indicators that can lead to adult heart disease.

“Many of us tend to think cardiovascular disease hits in older age, but arteries begin to stiffen when we are very young,” said study lead author Nicole Proudfoot from McMaster University in Canada.

“It’s important to start any kind of preventative measures early. We need to ensure that small children have many opportunities to be active to keep their hearts and blood vessels as healthy as possible,” Proudfoot said.

Physical Activity, Childhood, Cardiovascular Health
Physical activity in early childhood may have an impact on cardiovascular health later in life. Pixabay

For the study, more than 400 children between the ages of three and five years were involved. Over the course of three years, the researchers measured and analysed key markers of heart health: cardiovascular fitness, arterial stiffness and blood pressure.

The researchers calculated cardiovascular fitness by measuring how long the children could last on a treadmill test and how fast their heart rates recovered after exercise.

They measured arterial stiffness by how fast their pulse travelled through their body and used ultrasound images to measure the stiffness of the carotid artery. They also measured blood pressure.

The research team tracked physical activity each year by having the children wear an accelerometer around their waist for one week, allowing researchers to determine the amount and intensity of their activity each day.

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The researchers determined that while arteries stiffen over time, the process is slower in young children who have been more active.

Those kids also showed more endurance on the treadmill, suggesting they had better cardiovascular fitness and their heart rates came down faster after exercise.

While the study showed overall physical activity had favourable effects on cardiovascular health, more intense physical activity was more beneficial. (IANS)

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Is the Young Generation Really Able to Enjoy Childhood?

The academic competition has burdened the kids of this generation so much, that the meaning of childhood has changed for them

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water-Childhood
Childhood should be free of burdens and tensions. Pixabay

-By Muskan Bhatnagar

Childhood is the best phase of one’s life. The phase of life where there is no stress, no worries, no sorrows, but only enjoyment, innocence, and joy. Every time you recall those free happy days, all you’d wish is to rewind your life and relive those moments. Right?

Remember those weird yet fun outdoor games that we used to play all day long? Those little fights with friends? Crying over the smallest scratches we would get while playing? And how a bar of chocolate could give us all the happiness in this world? Those happy days are now long gone.

Nowadays, the idea of childhood has completely changed. Seeing parents forcing their kids into tuition classes at the tender age of 5 or 6 completely surprises me. Parents are so busy in their schedules that they tend to think that their kid might not be able to grasp everything at school. And due to lack of time and attention, they enroll their children into tuition classes at a very young age.

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Parents send their kids to extra study classes after school at a very young age. Pixabay

The parents are not wrong when they say that primary classes are the base of higher studies and hence they provide extra tutoring to their kids. But then, isn’t nursey class just too early for a student to compromise on playing and attend tuitions? After all, that is exactly what a student has to do after completing primary school. What is the need to burden kids with bookish knowledge at an age this young? Neither alphabets nor numbers are so tough. Studying in school is enough for a primary school kid even if the parents are not able to pay requisite attention to their ward’s studies.

Such decisions might hinder the child’s playtime which is very important during early childhood. Why has it turned so necessary to push your child into academic competition since the beginning of childhood? Why do parents want their kids to score the first rank in the first standard? How is it gonna help in the future? After all, academic excellence in primary classes doesn’t ensure good academic performance in later years.

I have come across kids who’ve been studying all day, all night since the start of their schooling, attending all subject tuitions for hours, then attending co-curricular classes as well. Don’t you think that childhood has been destroyed of a kid like this?

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Parents are not able to give attention to their kids’ studies and hence seek help through tuition classes. Pixabay

Parents need to understand that providing kids with luxurious lifestyles and all possible facilities isn’t called good parenting because at the end of the day you’ve destroyed the innocence, pure joy, and the childhood fun of the kid. Kids nowadays don’t experience the purity of childghood innocence, the burden-free playtimes, and the carefree mischiefs of childhood.

They’ve been exposed to academic competition and the race to achieve the highest marks, at such an early age that they have to compromise on every other thing. The parents have also become so careful that they don’t completely allow kids to have fun or to play outdoors. The fear of getting physically hurt stops parents from sending their kids to play as carelessly as the previous generation did.

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Seeing kids miss out on the happiest and the most carefree phase of their life saddens me. Studies are no doubt one of the most important aspects of life, but that never meant that it is more important than enjoying life.

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Children should be set free from all the burdens of life so that they can enjoy the best phase of their life carelessly. Pixabay

Adulthood and teenage years are hard phases of life, most of the time. Adolescents often face many difficulties, and adulthood has its own problems. The only carefree and stress-free part of a person’s life is childhood. After all, school life never comes back and there is no friendship as pure as the school friendships. Then why are we killing today’s generation’s childhood?

Let your child explore new things out of the bookish world, let them play more study less, let them play rough, let them become strong on their own, let them find subjects of their interest, let them make countless of unforgettable memories, let them make mistakes, let them live carelessly till they reach an age where it gets necessary to be burdened. At the end of the day, what childhood memories are your kids going to share with their kids?

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Deal with Orthopedic Issues During Lockdown Easily

Here are a few things you can do at home to lessen the pain arising out of restricted physical activity and lethargy

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Orthopedic
Lessen the pain arising out of restricted physical activity and lethargy, and live comfortably. Pixabay

The ongoing pan-India lockdown has not only flipped upside down our emotional well-being, but has also had an unforeseen impact on our physical one too, especially when it comes to mobility.

Life has changed, earlier people could go about their chores, head to work, make time for a little exercise, catch-up with their friends and peers; they are now unable to do so. This has tremendously limited physical movement and set in lethargy. Lack of physical movement has a direct influence on your muscle mass which impacts your metabolism significantly; reduced metabolism leads to increase in weight which further burdens our joints, says Dr. Kaushal Malhan, Director, Orthopedic Surgery and Joint Replacement Surgeon, Fortis Hospital, Mulund.

“Joint and muscle pain can also be experienced by doing chores or activities that you haven’t frequently done before like sitting cross-legged on the floor, bending from the waist while cleaning or cooking, lifting heavy weights, etc. It has been observed that reduced physical movement has led to increase in pain in the waist and back, legs, knees and hips,” underlines the expert.

Dr Malhan lists down a few things you can do at home to lessen the pain arising out of restricted physical activity and lethargy, and live comfortably:

Try to keep yourself active; moving is simply not enough; do some basic stretching. Ensure you work every muscle of the back and legs.

 

Knees
Reduced physical movement has led to an increase in pain in the waist and back, legs, knees, and hips. Pixabay

This will make sure you stay active, and will benefit the whole body. In case you are unable to perform any stretching exercise or experience discomfort, you may use a hot pack to soothe/relax the muscles that are often taut.

Those who are already experiencing joint pain will benefit from stretching and mobility of the body. One may use belts or other types of support. If you do not have a belt, you can use a cloth and tie it around the area where you experience pain. Elderly family members can use external support such as sticks or a walker if they experience difficulty in walking

Alternatively using hot and cold packs on the painful areas may also be beneficial. If you experience swollen knees, then you can tie a cloth or crepe bandage around it. You may also use a kneecap for the same

Pay close attention to your posture – Do not slump; while bending, avoid bending from the waist, make sure to gradually straighten from the knees. It is also important to consume a wholesome diet which is beneficial to the muscles and improves bone health – include green vegetables like Broccoli, Spinach, Tomato, Bell Peppers which increase resistance to infection. Ginger, Turmeric, Amla and Garlic also help boost immunity.

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Get as much rest as needed, do not over stress your body if you feel tired or experience some form of pain. If the problem persists and you experience extreme pain or discomfort, please seek medical help urgently and do not waste time when it comes to tackling such problems. (IANS)

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Having a Child with Cancer Doesn’t Impact Parents’ Separation: Researchers

Being parents to a cancer patient kid doesn't trigger separation, say researchers

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cancer seperation
Chldhood cancer may not trigger seperation among parents according to researchers. Pixabay

Contrary to traditional belief, researchers now say that having a child with cancer did not appear to impact parents’ risk of separation or divorce or affect future family planning.

Childhood cancer can cause feelings of fear and uncertainty among parents and burden them with many practical challenges related to caregiving and work-related obligations, according to the study published in the journal Cancer.

For the findings, the research team from the Danish Cancer Society Research Centre examined data from several registries in Denmark, linking information on parents of children diagnosed with cancer in 1982-2014 (7,066 children and 12,418 case parents) with parents of children without cancer (69,993 children and 125,014 comparison parents).

Parents were followed until 10 years after diagnosis, separation or divorce, death, emigration, or the end of 2017, whichever came first.

Overall, parents of children with cancer had a four per cent lower risk of separation and an eight per cent lower risk of divorce compared with parents of children without cancer.

Among parents of children with cancer, those who were younger had less education, and were unemployed had elevated risks for separation and divorce.

The findings showed that risks were also higher among parents of children diagnosed at a younger age.

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Parents of children with cancer had a four per cent lower risk of separation. Pixabay

The investigators also evaluated how the diagnosis of cancer in a child affects parents’ decisions on having another child.

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They expected that parents of a child with cancer would have fewer children than parents of children without cancer and that they would postpone having another child.

This was not the case, however, as the researchers found that the childhood cancer experience did not negatively affect parents’ future family planning in Denmark.

The researchers noted that health care providers should communicate these reassuring and encouraging findings to parents, but that support should be offered if needed to improve family life in the long term. (IANS)