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Browsing by Subject "early childhood"

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  • Väisänen, Elina (2023)
    Background: Parenting stress, romantic relationship satisfaction and their associations have been studied extensively, mostly with cross-sectional studies and in different clinical groups. However, parents of young children in non-clinical groups are less studied, especially with longitudinal settings. The aim of this master’s thesis is to investigate the change in maternal parenting stress over time, associations with romantic relationship satisfaction and if romantic relationship satisfaction modifies the change in parenting stress. Methods: Our sample (n = 361) is drawn from the prospective cohort study “The InTraUterine sampling in early pregnancy” (ITU). Participating mothers took part in two follow-up assessments: first at the child’s age of 1–2-years and second at 3 years. Parenting stress was assessed at the first and second follow-ups with the “Parenting Stress Index-Short Form” (PSI-SF) questionnaire with three subscales: parental distress, parent-child dysfunctional interaction and difficult child. Romantic relationship satisfaction was assessed at the first follow-up with the satisfaction subscale form the “Dyadic Adjustment Scale” (DAS) questionnaire. Data were analyzed using linear regression models and mixed models. Child’s age, sex, daycare, and siblings, as well as mother’s education and mental health disorders were controlled for in the analyses. Results: Higher parenting stress at the first follow-up was associated with higher parenting stress at the second follow-up. Higher romantic relationship satisfaction was associated with lower parenting stress at the first follow-up in all the subscales, and at the second follow-up in parental distress and difficult child subscales. Parenting stress related to difficult child’s subscale appeared to increase over time in the entire sample, but in the closer examination the changes in parenting stress were partly different in the groups of high and low romantic relationship satisfaction. Controlling for background variables did not affect the results. Conclusions: The results of this thesis fill the previous gaps in longitudinal settings and studies carried out with mothers of young children in non-clinical groups. It seems that romantic relationship satisfaction may be connected to parenting stress and its change in the early childhood. A broader understanding of these phenomena in the family context may be beneficial for applications, for example in health care, in preventing problems and promoting wellbeing of families with children.
  • Pesonen, Noora (2020)
    Objectives. Recent results of both animal and human studies suggest that intestinal microbiota, i.e. microorganisms inhabiting the gastrointestinal system, may be connected to their host’s cognition. However, the diverse effects of intestinal microbiota are still poorly understood and especially knowledge of its associations with normative childhood cognitive development is very scarce. The purpose of the current study was to examine the possible associations between infant intestinal microbial composition, richness and diversity and cognitive performance in early childhood. Methods. The current study sample consisted of the children taking part in Finnish Health and Early Life Microbiota (HELMi) longitudinal birth cohort study. The cognitive abilities of 424 children were assessed at 2 years of age with Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development, using cognitive, receptive language and expressive language subscales. Of 424 tested children, those from whom microbiota analysis for at least one fecal sample was available at the time of the start of this study, were included. Fecal samples were collected when infants were 3, 6 and 12 weeks old and 6, 9 and 12 months old, and the bacterial composition, richness and diversity were analyzed with 16S rRNA- amplicon sequencing method. Results and conclusions. Intestinal microbial composition in infancy was found to be related to cognitive abilities of the children, more specifically, receptive language skills and expressive language skills. A higher abundance of the genus Finegoldia at 12 weeks of age and the genus Serratia at 6 months of age were related to worse receptive language performance at 2 years of age. A higher abundance of the family Enterococcaceae at 12 weeks of age and the genus Alistipes at 6 months of age, were associated with worse expressive language skills. In addition, the children who scored in lowest 20th percentile in the receptive language tasks, had richer intestinal microbiota at 3 weeks and 6 months of age. Conclusions cannot yet be drawn based on these preliminary findings, but the results suggest that infant intestinal microbiota may be one of the factors influencing cognitive, especially verbal, development in early childhood.
  • Veijalainen, Jouni (2014)
    A child's emotional self-regulation skills affects clearly on how he/she behaves, reacts and builds his/hers understanding in different kinds of everyday activities. This research focuses on examining how children's emotional self-regulation skills occur in the everyday activities in Finnish day care and how it will effect on the children's social strategies. There were two research problems: (1) How a child's emotional self-regulation skills occur in the everyday activities in day care? And (2) How emotional self-regulation skills occur in children's social strategies? The theoretical relation of the emotional self-regulation skills and day care's every-day activities were supported by several self-regulation related international researches and theories. Child's Social Strategies were operated through Reunamo's (2007) different views of the relationships between perception and environmental change -theory. The method of this research was quantitative. The data used in this study was a part of Reunamo's (2010) Orientation project which included evaluation of the children's skills (n = 862), child observations (n = 18 364) and interviews (n = 805). 892 different children of the 47 different day cares and 17 child minders participated in the project. The instrument of the child's emotional self-regulation skills was based on teacher's likert scale evaluation of how a child recognizes his/her own feelings and how he/she can deal with them. The data was analyzed by using t-test, correlation, cross tabulation and chi-square. The results of the research brought out that children who had good emotional self-regulation skills had more often a social target on themselves than other children. Good self-regulation skills improved their ability to recognize other children's feelings and affected how they adapted to new situations with others, and to participate eagerly and with initiative to different activities. The poor skills of emotional self-regulation appeared in the child's tendency to use his/her influence and willpower towards other children. They were also strolling everywhere, seeking and waiting more often than other children. The children with poor emotional self-regulation skills didn't get involved in the day care activities as often. Nor did they use their imaginations to role play as other children did. Their social strategies were more often uncertain in social situations and they did not know how to react on them.
  • Tiainen, Marta (2018)
    The thesis is about the relationship between health and wealth. The goal is to show that they are connected to each other, and that improving health can lead to improve of wealth. The first part discusses the effect of health on wealth and vice versa. It shows that better wealth is connected to better health and health increase lead to the wealth increase. Then there is a theoretical model by Grossman (1972) and which was modified by Jacobson (2000). The model shows that the health is seen as a stock and that individual can invest into the health during the lifetime. The model shows also the change, when there is a family without children (partners can invest into each other’s health) and the family with a child (parents invest into child’s health). The wage and education effect is shown and developed by Grossman (1972). The increase in wage leads to increase in health, individual has more money to visit the doctors. The increase in education also leads to increase in health, but in this case individual gets more information on healthy lifestyle and follows it. The literature review shows how education, social status, early childhood, family and nutrition affect the health. Better educated have better health and higher income. An additional year of education increases the life. Lower socioeconomic status increases the probability of consuming unhealthy goods and being less educated. The subjective social status affects the childhood, the mental health and the income. Family plays a crucial role: the mother’s health, parents education, family’s socioeconomic status effect the health of a child and the future income. The low birth weight, mental health problems in childhood and bad nutrition lead to problems in health in the future and lower income. When the connection between health and wealth, and factors affecting the health are known, it is easier to implement policies to increase the total health and wealth. The healthy individual is more productive and it leads to economic growth, what is another topic and also widely discussed.