A feeling of safety and good night’s sleep are the things that matter the most to sick kids in hospital.
Published in the Journal of Advanced Nursing, the study fills a gap in our understanding of how children are feeling in hospital settings.
For the study, researchers developed the ‘Needs of Children Questionnaire’ (NCQ), the first of its kind to measure children’s self-reported psychosocial, physical and emotional needs in paediatric wards.
“Development of the NCQ is part of an international movement to place children as central to care delivery, which honours the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child,” said Mandie Foster, Professor at the Edith Cowan University in Australia.
The research team assessed 193 school-aged children in paediatric settings in Australia and New Zealand.
Children’s most important needs were identified as: To know they are safe and will be looked after, to get enough sleep at night, hospital staff listening to them, to have places their parents can go to for food and drinks.
Over 1.7 million Australian children were admitted to hospitals in 2016-17, researchers said, which emphasizes on the importance of this study.
“As adults, we often make assumptions about children’s needs and wants, but hospitals can be a scary and unfamiliar environment for many children and we shouldn’t assume we know how they are feeling,” Foster said.
“Being listened to and understood can give children an added sense of confidence about the situation they find themselves in,” she added. (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)