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Parenting News -- ScienceDaily

Latest research on parenting. Everything from infancy through the teen years, including breastfeeding, colic, academic success, behavioral problems, teen relationships and more.

A new study looks at the link between maternal sleep and permissive parenting during late adolescence. Findings show that mothers who don't get enough sleep or who take longer falling asleep have a greater tendency to engage in permissive parenting -- parenting marked by lax or inconsistent discipline.
Posted: May 21, 2018, 8:45 pm
A new study finds that a child's language skills in kindergarten can predict his or her future proficiency in other subjects.
Posted: May 17, 2018, 11:47 pm
The growing demand for children to get involved in organized activities outside of school is placing unprecedented strain upon families.
Posted: May 14, 2018, 4:24 pm
Parents are more willing to let their children see PG-13 movies with intense gun violence when the violence appears to be 'justified' than when it has no socially redeeming purpose, a study finds. But even when the violence in PG-13 movies appears justified, parents think it is more appropriate for teens at least 15 years old, two years older than the PG-13 rating suggests.
Posted: May 14, 2018, 1:55 pm
Smoking during pregnancy has well-documented negative effects on birth weight in infants and is linked to several childhood health problems. Now, researchers have found that prenatal marijuana use also can have consequences on infants' weight and can influence behavior problems, especially when combined with tobacco use.
Posted: May 10, 2018, 6:59 pm
A new study reveals why childhood friendships fall apart and is the first to demonstrate that parents are an important source of these breakups. Using data from 1,523 children, researchers examined parenting styles as well as mother and father self-reported depressive symptoms to predict the occurrence and timing of best friendships breaking up from the start to the end of elementary school (grades one to six). Some of the findings were not what they expected.
Posted: May 10, 2018, 2:13 pm
Sorry, new parents -- even though your infants appreciate your coos, they prefer to hear sounds from their peers -- other babies. Even at the pre-babbling stage, infants recognize vowel-like sounds, but they tend to dwell on these sounds when from the mouths of babes.A new line of research focuses on one aspect of infant speech development: how babies perceive speech with infant vocal properties.
Posted: May 9, 2018, 12:20 pm
New research delves into how digital media might affect the camp experience.
Posted: May 8, 2018, 3:17 pm
Different types of maternal homework assistance have a different impact on the child's way of completing school assignments in grades 2 to 4 of elementary school, according to a new study. Although all homework assistance presumably aims at helping the child, not all types of homework assistance lead to equally positive outcomes.
Posted: May 8, 2018, 2:21 pm
A brain-imaging study offers new support for the idea that infants can accurately track other people's beliefs. When 7-month-old infants in the study viewed videos of an actor who saw -- or failed to see -- an object being moved to a new location, activity in a brain region known to play a role in processing others' beliefs changed in the infants just as it did in adults watching the same videos.
Posted: May 7, 2018, 3:18 pm
A new study shows that parenting concerns have a significant impact on the mental and emotional health of women with advanced cancer. In particular, they found that a mother's emotional well-being was significantly linked with whether she had communicated with her children about her illness, and her concerns about how her illness will financially impact her children.
Posted: May 7, 2018, 11:42 am
This study investigates the complex relationships between pre-birth exposure to selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressants, and thinking and attention skills in 12-year-olds.
Posted: May 5, 2018, 1:18 pm
Women with a history of substance use disorders (SUD) have a high incidence of coexisting psychiatric and mood disorders as well as difficulty managing adversity. These characteristics may affect the ability of a pregnant woman with a history of SUD to cope with an infant with neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS), particularly one with a protracted neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) course, exacerbating symptoms of mental health disorders.
Posted: May 5, 2018, 1:16 pm
When a baby is taken from its mother for even a brief period early in life, this traumatic event significantly alters the future, adult function of the brain, according to a new animal model study. These changes in the brain are similar to disturbances in brain structure and function that are found in people at risk for neuropsychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia.
Posted: May 3, 2018, 6:27 pm
Children with greater parent communication in early adolescence have less harmful alcohol use and emotional eating in young adulthood.
Posted: May 3, 2018, 2:16 pm
Experts argue that, despite decades of debate, advocates and opponents of abortion have been unable to demonstrate conclusively that either side's view is false, or agree on when life starts. He says laws should not force women to risk death and injury by having a baby.
Posted: May 3, 2018, 2:16 pm
Parents don't need to fear their children playing with iPads and other devices, researchers say. Mindful play with an adult, combined with thoughtful design features, can prove beneficial to young developing minds. New research shows that thoughtfully designed content that intentionally supports parent-child interactions facilitated the same kind of play and development as analog toys.
Posted: May 1, 2018, 11:35 pm
Children who grow up listening to music with their parents report having better quality relationships with their moms and dads when they reach young adulthood, researchers found.
Posted: May 1, 2018, 11:35 pm
Autism is challenging to diagnose, especially early in life. A new study shows that inexpensive EEGs, which measure brain electrical activity, accurately predict or rule out autism spectrum disorder in infants, even in some as young as three months.
Posted: May 1, 2018, 12:51 pm
The more curious the child, the more likely he or she may be to perform better in school -- regardless of economic background -- suggests a study.
Posted: April 30, 2018, 11:56 am
Warm, nurturing parents may pass along strategies for building and maintaining positive relationships to their kids, setting them up for healthier, less-violent romantic relationships as young adults, according to researchers. In a study, adolescents who reported a positive family climate and their parents using more effective parenting strategies tended to go on to have better relationship problem-solving skills and less-violent romantic relationships as young adults.
Posted: April 27, 2018, 7:57 pm
Curious children are better able to grasp basic math and reading, according to a new study investigating a possible link between curiosity and early academic success among young children.
Posted: April 26, 2018, 3:04 pm
Exposure to general anaesthestic up to age four raises the risk of poor child development and reduced literacy and numeracy as measured by school tests, new research reveals.
Posted: April 26, 2018, 2:28 pm
Researchers have found a positive relationship between midday-napping and nighttime sleep. They believe it might be key to boosting neurocognitive function in early adolescents. The team examined adolescents in Jintan, China, measuring midday napping, nighttime sleep duration and sleep quality, and performance on multiple neurocognitive tasks. Habitual nappers (who napped more often) tended to have a better nighttime sleep.
Posted: April 25, 2018, 11:56 pm
What is the origin of these arousals? Scientists have discovered that brief arousals are probably triggered by the intrinsic electrical noise from wake-promoting neurons (WPN) in the brain. Their research reveals a previously unrecognized neurophysiological mechanism that links sleep arousals with temperature regulation, and may also provide an important new link between temperature and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
Posted: April 25, 2018, 8:20 pm
Children born to teenage mothers have the highest risk of developmental vulnerabilities at age 5, largely due to social and economic disadvantage, a new study of almost 100,000 school children has found. The risk declines steadily with every additional year of a mother's age up to 30 years, then increases slightly after 35 years and older -- to a level similar to the risk for children born to mothers in their early 20s.
Posted: April 25, 2018, 4:02 pm
Parents spend a lot of time worrying about the influence of peers on teen substance use. A new study examines if there is a genetic component that drives teens' desire for risk taking and novelty. A key finding revealed genetic influences that are unique to the growth in substance use. With each passing year, genetic differences between individuals become more and more important in explaining why substance use increases in some adolescents but not in others.
Posted: April 25, 2018, 1:37 pm
About 2.6 million American children and adolescents had diagnosed anxiety and/or depression in 2011-12, reports an analysis of nationwide data.
Posted: April 24, 2018, 10:41 pm
Early childhood interventions may have some efficacy in boosting measures of child health and development in low income countries, but more work is needed to sort out how to implement these interventions, according to a new set of studies.
Posted: April 24, 2018, 6:11 pm
People may be deteriorating into dementia later in life and living with it for a shorter period of time, a new study suggests.
Posted: April 23, 2018, 4:51 pm
With marijuana use during pregnancy on the rise, a new study shows that prenatal cannabis use was associated with a 50 percent increased likelihood of low birth weight, setting the stage for serious future health problems including infection and time spent in neonatal intensive care units.
Posted: April 23, 2018, 4:50 pm
A new study of trial court judges suggests these arbiters of the law sometimes let their personal ideas about gender roles influence their decision-making. The findings, which are part of a broader study of judicial behavior, revealed that the judges were just as likely as laypeople to discriminate - in ways that harmed both men and women - in decisions involving child custody or workplace discrimination cases related to family caregiving duties.
Posted: April 19, 2018, 6:15 pm
A new study has determined that poorer childhood cognition occurred, particularly in memory and learning, when pregnant women or their offspring consumed greater quantities of sugar. Substituting diet soda for sugar-sweetened versions during pregnancy also appeared to have negative effects. However, children's fruit consumption had beneficial effects and was associated with higher cognitive scores.
Posted: April 19, 2018, 5:09 pm
Shortly after they turn 1, most babies begin to help others, whether by handing their mother an object out of her reach or giving a sibling a toy that has fallen. Researchers have long studied how this helping behavior develops, but why it develops has been examined less. A new study looked at the role of imitation to find that when 16-month-olds observe others' helping behavior, they're more likely to be helpful themselves.
Posted: April 17, 2018, 5:00 pm
Graduating from college has significant implications for adults' long-term success, including employment, family formation, and health. A new longitudinal study found that when siblings in middle childhood experienced less warmth in their relationships with each other, spent different amounts of time with their fathers, or thought their parents treated them unfairly relative to their siblings, they were more likely to differ in their college graduation status (i.e., graduating versus not graduating).
Posted: April 17, 2018, 3:58 pm
Roughly one in 10 women in the United States will experience depression. The consequences, however, may extend to their children, report researchers who found that a mother's depression can negatively affect a child's cognitive development up to the age of 16.
Posted: April 17, 2018, 1:00 pm
The majority of US adults with children agree that state support for pregnant teens is a good investment but want to see teens meet certain criteria -- including taking parenting classes -- before receiving assistance.
Posted: April 16, 2018, 12:59 pm
The ability of babies to differentiate emotional expressions appears to develop during their first six months. But do they really recognize emotion or do they only distinguish the physical characteristics of faces and voices? Researchers have just provided an initial answer to this question, measuring the ability of six-month-old babies to make a connection between a voice expressing happiness or anger and the emotional expression on a face.
Posted: April 11, 2018, 6:51 pm
Scientists have deconstructed the brain circuits that control parenting behavior in mice, and identified discrete sets of cells that control actions, motivations, and hormonal changes involved in nurturing young animals.
Posted: April 11, 2018, 5:16 pm
The child welfare system is more likely to intervene in households in 'less neighborly' neighborhoods and in which parents spank their kids.
Posted: April 10, 2018, 8:11 pm
A study has established a link between inflammation in pregnant women and the way the newborn brain is organized into networks. The results may provide promising avenues to explore treatments with potential to change these negative impacts on newborn brain function.
Posted: April 9, 2018, 10:53 pm
A legacy of social and political factors rather than bad parenting may be influencing people's decisions not to vaccinate their children, according to a new study.
Posted: April 9, 2018, 1:01 pm
Parents of LGBTQ children feel especially uncomfortable and unequipped when they try to educate them about sex and dating, reports a new study. Parents don't know what constitutes safe sexual behaviors for LGBTQ teens and need resources to help them. Parents play an important role in helping their children learn how to have healthy sexual relationships.
Posted: April 5, 2018, 10:36 pm
Family medicine doctors and pediatricians are less confident than psychiatrists in their abilities to tell the difference between normal irritability and possibly bigger issues in children and adolescents, according to researchers. Primary care providers and pediatricians were also more likely to prescribe medications when they thought there was a problem, while psychiatrists were more likely to start with behavioral therapy.
Posted: April 5, 2018, 5:06 pm
A mother's 'basic instinct' to grab her wandering offspring and return them to the nest depends on a specific set of brain cell signals, a new study in mice finds.
Posted: April 4, 2018, 4:58 pm
For the first time, researchers have used MRIs to show that babies with the neurodevelopmental condition fragile X syndrome had less-developed white matter compared to infants that did not develop the condition. Imaging various sections of white matter from different angles can help researchers focus on the underlying brain circuitry important for proper neuron communication.
Posted: April 4, 2018, 3:47 pm
Mobile apps designed to help parents keep their children safe from online predators may actually be counterproductive, harming the trust between a parent and child and reducing the child's ability to respond to online threats, conclude two new studies.
Posted: April 3, 2018, 6:44 pm
Judges may be just as biased or even more biased than the general public in deciding court cases where traditional gender roles are challenged, according to a new study.
Posted: April 3, 2018, 12:50 pm
Babies who died during their sleep while being watched by someone other than parents often had been placed in unsafe sleep positions, such as on their stomachs, or in unsafe locations, such as a couch, a new study has found.
Posted: April 2, 2018, 2:51 pm
Mental health symptoms related to attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and conduct disorder are associated with increased errors in a driving simulator and self-reported risky driving behaviors in adolescents.
Posted: March 27, 2018, 8:26 pm
A universal sign of motherhood is the lullaby. The world over, mothers sing to their babies, whether Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, their favorite song from the radio, or even random notes. This universality makes the simple lullaby a great window into the human mind. In a new study, cognitive neuroscientists found that lullabies soothe both moms and babies simultaneously, while playsongs increase babies' attention and displays of positive emotion toward their mothers.
Posted: March 27, 2018, 2:28 pm
New research does not support the previously observed negative impacts of antidepressant use on breastfeeding.
Posted: March 26, 2018, 7:23 pm
Children as young as four years old with symptoms of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) showed reduced brain volumes in regions essential for behavioral control, according to a new study. The research represents the first comprehensive examination of cortical brain volume in preschool children with ADHD and provides an indication that anomalous brain structure is evident in the early stages of development.
Posted: March 26, 2018, 6:02 pm
In the United States, one infant is born every 15 minutes with withdrawal symptoms after being exposed to opioids before birth, according to a new study.
Posted: March 26, 2018, 3:01 pm
The time babies spend in the womb is far from idle. The brain is changing more rapidly during this time than at any other time in development. It is an active time for the fetus to grow and explore, and of course connect to its mother. New evidence from in-utero fetal brain scans shows, for the first time, that this connection directly affects brain development.
Posted: March 26, 2018, 3:01 pm
Sociologists examined which measures of socioeconomic status -- parents' education, family income, race and parents' occupation -- have the greatest influence over a child's locus of control and why.
Posted: March 22, 2018, 5:43 pm
New research finds links between certain math skills in young children and specific numerical activities undertaken at home with parents. The study also finds that the more parents engage in mathematical activities with their children, the higher their early numeracy performance.
Posted: March 22, 2018, 2:30 pm
The more mothers use food to soothe their babies, the more weight certain babies gained, according to researchers. The effect was only seen in babies with a surgent temperament -- characterized by being more outgoing, active and drawn to new things and people, putting these children at a risk for obesity later on.
Posted: March 20, 2018, 4:34 pm
Most parenting programs aim to teach parents how to reduce their children's disruptive behavior. New research looked at more than 150 studies of these programs, finding differences in what works best according to whether or not children already showed behavior problems.
Posted: March 20, 2018, 12:43 pm
Social media use may have different effects on wellbeing in adolescent boys and girls, according to new research. Researchers found an association between increased time spent on social media in early adolescence (age 10) and reduced well-being in later adolescence (age 10-15) -- but only among girls.
Posted: March 20, 2018, 1:56 am
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