A study of 428 fourth graders and 453 parents in seven rural and seven urban Georgia schools also showed that the urban children were more likely to be smokers – 14.9 percent versus 6.6 percent. Additionally urban children have the most exposure to smokers: 79.6 percent versus 75.3 percent, according to findings presented to the 15th World Conference on Tobacco or Health March 20-24 in Singapore.
"It's bad news," said Dr. Martha S. Tingen, Co-Director of Georgia Health Sciences University's Child Health Discovery Institute and Interim Program Leader of the GHSU Cancer Center's Cancer Prevention and Control Program. "Smoking is one of the major causes of low-birth weight infants, it increases the incidence of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome by 10 times, increases breathing problems, asthma-related hospital admissions, ear and upper-respiratory infections, yet all these kids are living in a smoking environment."
The findings are another reminder to pediatricians to talk with parents and children about smoking habits during every checkup and to researchers that more community-based studies are needed to give parents and children alike the skills they need to avoid or stop smoking, Tingen said. They also indicate that geography and health disparities need to figure heavily into tailoring solutions.
In the study group, researchers found children in the rural areas were more likely to be white and living with both parents; children in urban settings tended to be poorer, live with one parent, receive health care at community health clinics and have a parent who smoked.At GHSU, young pediatricians such as Dr. Ketarah Robinson learn early to be vigilant and forthright about major health issues such as smoking and obesity with the parents and children they see in clinic, asking tough questions about whether the kids are getting pressured to smoke and if they've already given in. Like the children in the study, some kids say "yes" as early as age 10. Then doctors such as Robinson give them readily discernible reasons not to. "At that age we give them more concrete things like: Do you want to stink and have yellow teeth?" said Robinson, Co-Chief Resident in Pediatrics at GHS Children's Medical Center. Robinson and second-year Medical College of Georgia student Prathyusha Mididoddi will present the rural versus urban findings in Singapore. Tingen, who holds the Charles W. Linder Endowed Chair in Pediatrics, is first author.
"At any age, cigarette smoke really affects kids, whether it's a grandmother they visit with on weekends or a parent they are with every day," Robinson said. Now in her fourth year of training, Robinson already has seen educational efforts help parents stop smoking or at least keep them from smoking around their children. But she's also had a few patients start smoking.
Amazingly, some of those young smokers might already have trouble breathing. In a related study of 2,636 eighth-to-10th graders in four rural Georgia schools, GHSU researchers also found that nearly 40 percent of white females and nearly 27 percent of white boys with wheezing, coughing asthma symptoms said they smoked. There were other unhealthy indicators: children with an actual asthma diagnosis – whether or not they had symptoms – had a higher percentage of body fat as measured by a higher body mass index.
The study looked at children with no asthma diagnosis, a diagnosis and symptoms, a diagnosis and no symptoms and active symptoms – but no actual diagnosis – in a 30 day-period. While smoke exposure is bad for anyone, it's at the top of the list of asthma triggers. The asthma study, along with another study yielding encouraging news that home-based intervention can help black parents feel confident about their ability to make their home tobacco-free, are being presented as posters during the tobacco research meeting.
The study compared general health education to parents learning life skills geared at improving communication, emphasizing their strength as role models and fundamentals such as best parenting practices. The study was in a mix of urban and rural parents who were largely black and an average age of 38. Parents who got life skills training significantly increased their self-efficacy.
"It's an expectation that we are not going to smoke and nobody is going to smoke in our house," said Tingen, who has been taking these types of educational programs to schools and communities for years. "It's an expectation that when you grow up, you are not going to smoke." Tingen hopes this type of positive life-skills training will one day be available to children and parents in every school.Dr. Dennis Ownby, Chief of the Medical College of Georgia Section of Allergy-Immunology and Rheumatology at GHSU, is Co-Principal Investigator with Tingen on a National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute grant that helped fund the studies and is a co-author on the asthma poster. Other research team members attending the conference include Maudesta Caleb, Research Associate; Kelora Cofer, Research Assistant; and Matthew Humphries; Research Manager, all with the Georgia Prevention Institute and MCG Department of Pediatrics.
Toni Baker | EurekAlert!
Win-win strategies for climate and food security
02.10.2017 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)
The personality factor: How to foster the sharing of research data
06.09.2017 | ZBW – Leibniz-Informationszentrum Wirtschaft
University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event
On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...
Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.
Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....
Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).
When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...
Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.
How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...
Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.
It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...
17.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
20.10.2017 | Information Technology
20.10.2017 | Materials Sciences
20.10.2017 | Interdisciplinary Research