Monday, December 06, 2010

Child poverty and mental distress

Adults who are poor are also more likely to suffer from depression and anxiety, however, despite what common sense might suggest the research into how poverty affects the mental health of children and young people is inconclusive. A team of French researchers used information from a study of 941 people. The participants in the study were aged between four and 18 when it started in 1991 and were followed up in 1999. The study found that the children from low-income families in 1991 were 74% more likely to suffer from anxiety and depression in 1999. Children in families whose income either decreased or stayed persistently low between 1991 and 1999 were 2.44 times more likely to suffer from psychological distress.

Melchior, Maria ... [et al] - Family income and youths' symptoms of depression and anxiety: a longitudinal study of the French Gazel youth cohort Depression and anxiety 27(12), 1095-1103

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