A good relationship between fathers and children had a positive effect that could last for decades as father's love goes far in a child's life, researchers found. ''Overall, children reap positive benefits if they have active and regular engagement with a father figure,'' Daily Mail quoted Anna Sarkadi, of Sweden's Uppsala University as saying. ''Children who had positively involved father figures were less likely to smoke and get into trouble with the police, achieved better levels of education and developed good friendship with children of both the sexes,'' she added.
In low-income homes, regular contact also lead to less juvenile crime. The study showed the value of the father's input as a role model from babyhood to the teenage years.
The smallest study focused on 17 infants and the largest covered 8,441 people ranging from premature babies to 33-year-olds.
It was found that children who lived with both the mother and father had fewer behavioural problems than those who lived with their mother only.
Behavioural problems in boys, and psychological problems in girls, were seen less frequent. Intelligence, reasoning and language were more advanced in children who had good contact with both the parents.
''Fathers and mothers complement each other and together provide a rich care within the family which can't be replicated in any other setting,'' she concluded.