The Effect of Racism on Children’s Health
Several pediatricians recently warned that racism can have long term adverse effects of child’s health. No matter what is happening in the society, all we come to know from various social media websites. Not to forget, our kids too are exposed to all such information. As much we try to keep our children away from such information, we fail in doing it. It is having direct effect on the health of our kids. Health care providers and pediatricians are required to spread the information related to racism and its effect on child’s health.
Racism is a system of structuring opportunity based on social interpretation of how one looks that unfairly disadvantages some individuals, communities and disturbs the strength of the society. In a study it was found an increase in children’s’ stress and worry about discrimination. Around 2500 high school students were observed in this study. Children who were more stressed were more likely to drink, smoke or experiment other drugs available to them. Various scientists have documented health disparities among races. Black children are more in risk than whites to suffer from diabetes, hypertension and heart diseases. They are also high in number to be admitted to hospital for asthma treatment.
Though all these problems can also be due to low income level, pollution etc. but it is also proved that racism and discrimination too play great role in rising these health problems. Exposure to racism in children is linked to an increased risk of depression, heart disease and other ailments. Studies have also found the issue of lower birth weights in children born from an African American mothers who experienced discrimination. Recent studies have found an increased risk of depression, obesity and prone to sickness among children who are exposed to racism. Racism can also effect children’s sleep, lower self-esteem and requirement to visit doctor frequently.