Kids raised by relatives face physical, mental health problems

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Washington, May 3 (ANI): Kids who live with relatives instead of their parents are at increased risk for physical and mental health problems, a new research has shown.

"Children who live in kinship care with a relative have more special health care needs, mental health problems such as ADHD and depression, and dental problems compared with children who live with their parents," said Sara B. Eleoff, from the University Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry in New York.

She and her colleagues analyzed data from more than 91,000 children included in a 2007 national survey, comparing those in kinship care with children who lived with at least one birth parent.

Compared with children who lived with a parent, children in kinship care were more likely to be black, older than 9 years, have public health insurance and live in households with incomes at or near the poverty level. Many kinship caregivers reported having poor overall health or mental health, the researchers noted.

"These children and their families may need additional services and supports. Therefore, health care providers, educators and public health agencies should ask about children's living situations and consider the risk of special needs among children in kinship care," Eleoff said.

The findings have been presented at the Pediatric Academic Societies (PAS) annual meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. (ANI)

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