Parental perception of child bodyweight and health: Evidence from 309 vulnerable Mexican-American families in south Texas
Wednesday, November 6, 2013
: 8:45 a.m. - 9:00 a.m.
This study assessed the perception of child's bodyweight and health by Mexican-American parents whose children have been diagnosed with acanthosis nigricans (AN), a cutaneous marker associated with elevated risk of type 2 diabetes. The working sample had 309 Mexican American parent-child pairs in South Texas with each pair consisting of an AN-positive child and his or her biological parent. About 91 percent of the children in the sample were obese and 6.5 percent were overweight. Close to 62 percent of fathers rated their children's health excellent or very good as compared to 42.8 percent of mothers. Fathers were less likely than mothers to be concerned about child's bodyweight (61.5 percent vs. 80.1 percent). In terms of awareness of child's AN, 50 percent of fathers were aware as compared to 66.3 percent among mothers. After adjusting for selected explanatory variables at both the child and parent level, the odds for fathers, relative to mothers, to be concerned about child's bodyweight were 82 percent less (p<0.05). Similar findings also hold in the case of awareness of child's AN (OR=0.19, p<0.05). Among Mexican-American families with AN-positive children, the lack of concern over childhood obesity, unawareness of AN, and misconception of child health on the part of many parents, especially of fathers, constitutes a challenge to diabetes prevention. Culturally-appropriate health education programs are urgently needed to reduce risk of diabetes among Mexican-American families. To be cost-effective, these programs should consider mother-father differences in perception of child health and bodyweight among Mexican-American parents.
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Chronic disease management and prevention
Describe the perception of child's bodyweight and health by Mexican-American parents whose children have been diagnosed with acanthosis nigricans (AN), a cutaneous marker associated with elevated risk of type 2 diabetes.
Keyword(s): Health Literacy, Health Education Strategies
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: As a medical sociologist and demographer, I have been conducting federally sponsored research in health care access among the US Latino population since 2007 as indicated by my recent publications in refereed journals.
Any relevant financial relationships? No
I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines,
and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed
in my presentation.