Sunday, October 31, 2010

Mum's influence childrens pain level

Pain is very difficult to quantify and the physiology and physiology of pain isn't always clear cut. I have observed with my children that response to pain can vary depending on a number of internal circumstance. For example when they get hungry or tired little knocks become big deals, little knocks that wouldn't worry them normally.

Once a close friend of mine who is grandfather material, theorized that a lot of the crying due to "hurt" babies/toddlers was due to the attention they got if they had an accident. So he used to ignore young children that fell unless they really did themselves a mischief. And it seemed to work somewhat, kids used to pick themselves up and move on if he was looking after them, instead of crying. 

Anyway an article with the wonderful title "Parental catastrophizing about their child’s chronic pain: Are mothers and fathers different?". Parental catastophizing has such a neat mental image and rolls of the tongue. What the study found was that dads behavior didn't have an effect on the child's pain. 

However mums had significant impact. Not only did the catastrophize more, mums "contributed significantly in explaining the child’s pain intensity". In simple terms this means if mum was freaking out and working up about how bad the pain was, the child felt more pain. Where if the mum was chilling then the child's pain was less.

So mum's chill out a bit when your child gets hurt. This will help decrease the pain for the child. 

Reference: Tanja Hechlera, Tine Vervoortb, Maximiliane Hamanna,  Anna-Lena Tietzea, Silja Vocksc, Liesbet Goubertb, Christiane Hermannd, Julia Wagera, Markus Blankenburga, Sandra Schroedera and Boris Zernikowa. Parental catastrophizing about their child’s chronic pain: Are mothers and fathers different?.European Journal of Pain doi:10.1016/j.ejpain.2010.09.015 |

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