Shared family activities boosts preschoolers' emotional health - WHLT 22 Connecting the Pine Belt

Shared family activities may boost preschoolers' emotional health

Updated: March 6, 2014 02:39 PM
© iStockphoto.com / Justin Horrocks © iStockphoto.com / Justin Horrocks
  • HealthMore>>

  • The 'Hobby Lobby ruling' and what it means for U.S. health care

    The 'Hobby Lobby ruling' and what it means for U.S. health care

    The U.S. Supreme Court's ruling on contraception coverage -- as mandated under the Affordable Care Act -- could lead to a legal quagmire that might allow companies to deny insurance coverage for any medical practice that violates their religious principles.
    The U.S. Supreme Court's ruling on contraception coverage -- as mandated under the Affordable Care Act -- could lead to a legal quagmire that might allow companies to deny insurance coverage for any medical practice that violates their religious principles.
  • Diet changes can alter gut bacteria

    Diet changes can alter gut bacteria

    Dietary changes can dramatically alter the balance of bacteria in the gut on a daily basis, according to a new study.
    Dietary changes can dramatically alter the balance of bacteria in the gut on a daily basis, according to a new study.
  • Lift U.S. ban on blood donations by gay men

    Lift U.S. ban on blood donations by gay men

    The United States should repeal a 30-year policy that bans blood donations from gay and bisexual men, according to a team of medical and legal experts writing this week in the Journal of the American Medical...
    The United States should repeal a 30-year policy that bans blood donations from gay and bisexual men, according to a team of medical and legal experts writing this week in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

THURSDAY, March 6, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Taking part in family activities on a regular basis benefits the social and emotional health of young children, a new study finds.

And the more of these shared family routines, the better.

"Social-emotional health" is defined as being able to understand emotions, express empathy, have self-control and form good relationships with other children and adults.

Researchers looked at parent-provided data about 8,550 preschool kids in the United States to assess how often the children did things with their families, such as eating dinner, singing, reading books, playing and telling stories.

Fifty-seven percent of children participated in three or more regular family activities and more than 16 percent of the children had high social-emotional health.

The researchers also found that children who took part in five regular family activities were more than twice as likely to have high social-emotional health. Moreover, for each additional activity that parents and children do together, the child is nearly 50 percent more likely to have high social-emotional health.

The study was published in the February/March issue of the Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics.

"High social-emotional health has been associated with greater academic performance and improved behavior in the school environment," study leader Dr. Elisa Muniz, a developmental-behavioral pediatrician at Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center, said in a news release from the Children's Hospital at Montefiore (CHAM) in New York City.

"Our findings suggest that parents with preschool-aged children who regularly practice family routines together have greater social-emotional health and so we encourage families to sing, read, play and eat together on a regular basis," said Muniz, who led the research while a fellow at the Children's Evaluation and Rehabilitation Center at Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University, affiliated with CHAM.

Participating in regular family activities can give children a sense of security and belonging, the researchers explained.

More information

The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more about parenting.

Copyright © 2014 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

*DISCLAIMER*: The information contained in or provided through this site section is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be and is not a substitute for professional advice. Use of this site section and any information contained on or provided through this site section is at your own risk and any information contained on or provided through this site section is provided on an "as is" basis without any representations or warranties.
Powered by WorldNow

5912 Hwy. 49, Ste. A
Hattiesburg, MS 39401

Telephone: 601.545.2077
Fax: 601.545.3589
Email: newsroom@whlt.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.