Impacts of poverty on child’s health
Poverty is a burning issue across the globe. Approximately, 1/2 of the world’s population is more or less falls under the category of extreme poverty. The effects of poverty on a child’s health and development are devastating.
Child poverty can keep away the growing kids from the love and care they need and deserve. The numerous effects of poverty on children include missing out on healthy meals, proper education, healthcare, and essential cognitive development activities.
The effects of poverty on families have the greatest impact on a child’s mental health. They grow up seeing their loved ones living under poor health conditions. It instills insecurity, social fear and poor confidence in them. If a kid in his/ her growing years lives in poverty, he/ she is more likely to have poor mental and physical health, poor academic performance, low confidence, social deprivation, bullying within peer groups and later on employment difficulties and other behavioural issues.
Let’s have a look at the effects of poverty on families and child’s health and development:
- Effects of poverty on children’s education: Poverty brings in physical, mental, financial and emotional stress. According to many studies, chronic stress adversely alters a child’s brain development resulting in negative results in the process of learning and education.
- Effects of poverty on children’s education and mental health have long-lasting consequences as well including anxiety, impairing memory and cognitive inabilities. They can never be able to do a proper job or lead a good career.
- Effects of poverty on health: Kids who experience poor living conditions in their early stages of life, tend to develop chronic illnesses like asthma, mood disorders, hormonal imbalances etc. They also experience shortened life expectancy as gradually their health deteriorates succumbing to negativities in living conditions.
The harmful effects of malnutrition and unhealthy eating habits due to poverty increases the fatal risks of obesity, hypertension, and diabetes. There is an ultimate risk of heart disease in young adults.
- Effects of poverty on child’s competing and achievement skills: Kids growing under poor economic conditions tend to fall behind in competitions and face failures early as compared to other kids with secured economic conditions. Also, the majority of school and college dropout kids have poor financial backgrounds. Incompetency develops due to the gaps in learning, knowledge gaining and grasping social-emotional traits process. These gaps go unnoticed during the crucial developmental stage resulted in an under-confident and scared adult.
- Effects of poverty of a child’s emotional and behavioural health: Poverty impacts a child in multiple ways constricting good and proper growth and development of behavioural and emotional skills. As a result of poor finances, they face food insecurity and don’t get the kind of diet and nutrition they need in growing years. Underdeveloped bones, tissues, teeth, malnourishment etc. are extremely common features in kids facing poverty.
- Effects of poverty of child’s overall fitness: Many researchers have found that children living in a neighbourhood with a high percentage of poverty are likely to show negative academic, social, emotional, physical and behavioural outcomes. Poor neighbourhoods are comparatively more exposed to health hazards, unhygienic living conditions, toxins, communicable agents, crime, abusive traits and violence.
Living within such inappropriate conditions, one will develop poor mental and physical health. Social illness is a very big issue which goes totally unnoticed in these communities.
The effects of poverty on families as well as on child’s health and development are so evident and damaging that the entire world is fighting against it since ages.
It affects prenatal health as well and thus damages the future generation.
While the government of different countries are putting in their best efforts in solving the issues related to poverty, there are several tested solutions to poverty. Many studies and researchers have found many potential solutions like creating supermarkets featuring farmer’s markets and recreational spaces for poor kids. NGOs can come together to provide good education, health, nutrition etc. in those spaces.
Timely medical and health camps can reduce the risks of diseases and disorders amongst these low-income communities. Trained medical professionals and counsellors should be appointed for free services in these areas to cater to the mental issues which go unaddressed totally. Donation camps can also be organised so that poor families and kids get the kind of living needs and resources they deserve to lead a decent and healthy life. Remember, a healthy generation today will create a safe future, tomorrow.
The issue of child poverty needs collaborative and strategical help. Can we all come together to create a better tomorrow for humanity? Think.