Navigation Links
Girls will be girls longer when home life is stable
Date:11/14/2007

For many young girls, a stable family life is one key factor to avoiding a number of serious health problems. New research by researchers at The University of Arizona and the University of Wisconsin, Madison, indicates that girls who grow up with supportive parents who themselves have a strong relationship are more likely to delay the onset of puberty.

Bruce J. Ellis, an associate professor in the Norton School of Family and Consumer Sciences at the UA, and Marilyn J. Essex at Wisconsin, are reporting their research (Family Environments, Adrenarche, and Sexual Maturation: A Longitudinal Test of a Life History Model) in the November/December issue of Child Development, the journal of the Society for Research in Child Development. Ellis was the lead author of the study.

Early puberty in girls is already known as a risk factor for a variety of health problems, including mood disorders, substance abuse, adolescent pregnancy and cancers of the reproductive system. Understanding these risks are also essential as a means to develop effective early intervention and prevention strategies.

Ellis and Essex based their study on a 1991 model developed by noted psychologist Jay Belsky and his colleagues of the role of family ecology in speeding up or slowing down puberty in girls. Belskys theory is that childrens early experiences affect how they mature. Certain stressors in and around the family create conditions that speed puberty as well as sexual activity. These stressors include poverty, marital conflict, negativity and coercion in parent-child relationships, and lack of support between parents and children. According to Belskys theory, children adaptively adjust their sexual development in response to the conditions in which they live.

To test this, Ellis and Essex investigated how stressors affect childrens development by examining families of 227 preschool children in Wisconsin. They measured socioeconomic conditions, marital conflict, parental depression and supportive versus coercive parenting through interviews with mothers and fathers. The study followed the children through middle school, testing the first hormonal changes of puberty, the awakening of the adrenal glands, in 120 of the children (73 of whom were girls) when they were in first grade, and the development of secondary sexual characteristics, such as breast budding and the growth of body hair, in 180 girls in fifth grade. Ellis said the data on puberty were obtained from mother-and-daughter reports.

Essentially, the mothers and daughters were independently shown a series of diagrams depicting different levels of physical development and then selected the diagram that most closely resembled the daughter, Ellis said.

The results of the study show that children living in families with greater parental supportiveness, from both mothers and fathers, less marital conflict and less depression reported by the fathers experienced the first hormonal changes of puberty later than other children. In addition, children whose mothers had started puberty later (a genetic factor), whose families were better off when the children were in preschool, whose mothers gave them more support when they were in preschool and who had lower Body Mass Index when they were in third grade developed secondary sexual characteristics later than their peers.

Consistent with the theory, quality of parental investment emerged as a central feature of the proximal family environment in relation to the timing of puberty, Ellis said.

These results replicate and extend previous longitudinal research indicating that higher levels of positive investment and support in family relationships in preschool predict lower levels of pubertal maturation in daughters in the seventh grade, he said.


'/>"/>

Contact: Bruce J. Ellis
bjellis@email.arizona.edu
520-626-5703
University of Arizona
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Girls Really Do Prefer Pink
2. School-based overweight prevention program may cut risk of eating disorders among girls
3. Wacoal Renews Successful Support the Girls Program
4. Teen girls report abusive boyfriends try to get them pregnant
5. Grand Opening of Regence Boys & Girls Club Marks a Milestone in Historic New Columbia Community Revitalization
6. Should schoolgirls be vaccinated against cancer virus?
7. St. Jude Program Reduces Weight Gain in Young African-American Girls
8. St. Jude program reduces weight gain in young African-American girls
9. Longer ambulance journeys boost death risk for seriously ill patients
10. Key to longer life (in flies) lies in just 14 brain cells
11. Long Term Care Newsletter Debuts, Published by LTC Financial Partners; Advice on Living Better, Not Just Longer, With Financial Protection
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/4/2016)... , ... May 04, 2016 , ... May kicked off ... people across the United States. Dermatologist Dr. Ellen Turner is encouraging her patients, as ... advice and focus on skin safety and health now and in the future. , ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... ... , ... Recognizing that lifestyle medicine is essential to health and healthcare, ... Katz, MD, MPH, president of the American College of Lifestyle Medicine, as their first ... gratifying,” said Katz. “There is so much opportunity to add years to lives, and ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Bayco Products has announced the introduction of ... in models NSP-9842XL and NSR-9844XL . , First previewed at SHOT Show ... included CR-123 batteries to produce up to 650 lumens in a variety of ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... ... May 03, 2016 – (PRWEB) May 04, 2016 ... products, today revealed the non-toxic benefits of its Tutti Frutti line ... teething pain is just part of the story. These food-grade, silicone ... PVC-, and phthalate-free. , “Many baby toys contain BPA, harmful ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Fertility Centers of New England announced today the opening of ... Center provides convenient access to care for patients seeking fertility treatment in Maine. “We ... Comprehensive Care in Portland,” said Fertility Centers of New England President and CEO, Joseph ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/4/2016)... May 4, 2016 Valeritas Holdings, ... an alternative public offering (APO). This was accomplished via ... Valeritas, Inc. and a private placement of approximately 5 ... per share. Under the terms of the ... Valeritas Holdings, Inc. will trade on the OTC Markets ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... 2016 Research and ... Acute lymphocytic Leukemia Market and Competitive Landscape ...      (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160330/349511LOGO ... Market and Competitive Landscape Highlights 2016, provides ... products, Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia epidemiology, Acute Lymphocytic ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... 2016  As a teenager, an active and athletic ... damaged his heart. He continued enjoying sports and recreation ... Shepherd,s heart was giving out and he was a ... 2013, the Mesa, Arizona resident ... a heart transplant, the SynCardia TAH-t is the only ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: