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Open AccessArticle

Impact of Psychosocial Environment on Young Children’s Emotional and Behavioral Difficulties

1
Department of Environmental Sciences, Vytautas Magnus University, K. Donelaicio str. 58, 44248 Kaunas, Lithuania
2
Department of Theoretical Psychology, Vytautas Magnus University, K. Donelaicio str. 58, 44248 Kaunas, Lithuania
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(10), 1278; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph14101278
Received: 18 September 2017 / Revised: 22 October 2017 / Accepted: 23 October 2017 / Published: 24 October 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Health)
Objective: The impact of maternal psychosocial stress on young children’s mental difficulties is unclear. This study investigated the joint effects of the socioeconomic status and parent-child relationships on emotional and behavioral difficulties in preschool children. Methods: The case-control study included 1416 mothers and their 4–6 year-old children pairs, living in Kaunas city, Lithuania. The parent-child relationships were measured using the Parent-Child Dysfunctional Interaction subscale. Children’s mental health difficulties were assessed by the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire. We used logistic regression models to indicate the strength of the associations. Results: Lower socioeconomic status women more often than higher ones reported pathological mother-child relations. Low education level was associated with statistically significant increase adjusted odds ratios for emotional symptoms and total behavioral difficulties. With reference to the group of better-educated mothers and normal mother-child relations, low education and pathological mother-child relations statistically significantly increased the risk of total difficulties in 4–6 year-old children; the adjusted odds ratios were 2.45; 95% CI 1.51–3.99. Conclusions: Pathological mother-child relations strengthened the effect of lower education on the increased risk of emotional and behavioral difficulties in preschool-age children. Measures oriented towards health behavior and psychosocial difficulties management may decrease children’s emotional and behavioral difficulties. View Full-Text
Keywords: education level; psychosocial stress; mother-child relationships; children mental difficulties education level; psychosocial stress; mother-child relationships; children mental difficulties
MDPI and ACS Style

Grazuleviciene, R.; Andrusaityte, S.; Petraviciene, I.; Balseviciene, B. Impact of Psychosocial Environment on Young Children’s Emotional and Behavioral Difficulties. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14, 1278.

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