Young mother

Children born to teen mothers may have a slight language delay compared to children born to mothers in their late 20s and 30s, but they are not disadvantaged intellectually, a new British study suggests.
“Being a teenage mother significantly limits one’s ability to gain further education and higher-level employment, which may in turn affect child development,” the researchers said.
The study uncovered differences between the groups in terms of medical care and baby care. For instance: Teen mothers were more likely than older mothers to have their pregnancy confirmed after 30 weeks — 2 per cent of teens compared to 1 per cent of mothers 30 to 34. The teen mothers also were much more likely to have no prenatal care (7 per cent) compared to the older group (1 per cent).
Extended breast-feeding, which is considered beneficial for children, also was less common in the younger mothers.
Source: MedlinePlus
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy ‘Effective’ for Health Anxiety
New research suggests that cognitive behavioural therapy is more effective at reducing health anxiety in medical patients, compared with standard care. This is according to a study published in ?The Lancet?.
Researchers from the UK, led by Professor Peter Tyrer from Imperial College London, say an additional benefit of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is that it can be delivered to patients by non-specialist staff with minimal training at minimal cost.
According to the UK’s National Health Service (NHS), health anxiety, or hypochondria, is defined as obsessive worrying about health, “usually to the point where it causes great distress and affects your ability to function properly.”
Health anxiety, the NHS explains, can cause some people to experience unexplained physical symptoms, such as headaches or chest pains, leading to a person assuming they are suffering from a serious disorder, regardless of a clinician’s reassurance that they are healthy.
According to the researchers, 10-20 per cent of hospital patients suffer from health anxiety, and this poses a substantial burden on health services since a patient’s fear of having a serious disorder leads to medical consultation.
The study authors note that previous studies have demonstrated that CBT – a therapy that aims to change a person’s behaviour and thought patterns – is successful as a treatment for other anxiety disorders. Therefore, the researchers set out to determine whether this therapy would be effective in treating health anxiety.
Source: Medical News Today
Premature Babies More Likely to Underperform at School
Babies born prematurely should have their school entry date determined by their due date, not their actual date of birth, a new study indicates.
Researchers from the University of Bristol found that premature babies were at an educational disadvantage compared to children born at full term ? and observed that the problem was especially prevalent in August babies who went on to attend school a year earlier because of premature birth.
Sir Albert Aynsley Green, professor emeritus of child health at University College London and one of the UK?s leading experts on children?s services, said that the data should prompt a ?change in policy? on school entry ages.
?The increase in survival rates for premature babies is a great medical success,? he said. ?However, the consequence of this for too many infants is that their educational needs are not being addressed adequately, including the age at which they start formal school education. Education experts must look at these data and argue for a change in policy so that the school entry age for children born prematurely is based on their expected due date rather than their premature date of birth.?
Source: The Independent

Compiled by LARA ADEJORO

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