Wearable sensor can detect hidden anxiety, depression in young children

Anxiety and depression in young children are hard to detect and often go untreated, potentially leading to anxiety disorders and increased risk of suicide and drug abuse later. In a new study, researchers showed a wearable sensor detected these ‘internalizing disorders’ in children with 81 percent accuracy, reducing to 20 seconds what would take clinicians months to diagnose, opening the door to inexpensive screening that could be part of routine developmental assessments.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Controlling children’s behavior with screen time leads to more screen time, study reveals

Researchers investigated the impact of parenting practices on the amount of time young children spend in front of screens. They found a majority of parents use screen time to control behavior, especially on weekends. This results in children spending an average of 20 minutes more a day on weekends in front of a screen. Researchers say this is likely because using it as a reward or punishment heightens a child’s attraction to the activity.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Brain plasticity restored in adult mice through targeting specific nerve cell connections

Research in mice finds a new molecular mechanism that is essential for maturation of brain function and may be used to restore plasticity in aged brains. Unlike previous research that broadly manipulated brain plasticity and affected the entire brain, this work targets for the first time a specific molecule acting on a single type of neuronal connection to modulate brain function. The findings may advance treatment of human diseases such as autism and stroke.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Can a video game-based ‘digital medicine’ help children with autism and co-occurring ADHD?

Researchers evaluated a digital medicine tool designed as an investigational treatment for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and co-occurring attention/deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Passive exposure alone can enhance the learning of foreign speech sounds

Ability to understand and subsequently speak a new language requires the ability to accurately discriminate speech sounds of a given language. When we start to learn a new language the differences between speech sounds can be very difficult to perceive. With enough active practice the ability to discriminate the speech sounds enhances.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Widespread brain alterations in children with callousness

Children with elevated levels of callous traits — such as a lack of remorse and disregard for other people’s feelings — show widespread differences in brain structure compared with children with lower levels of the traits, according to a new study.
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New study finds bias against women and girls when intellectual ability is sought

A new study finds bias against both women and girls for jobs or activities requiring intellectual ability. The research underscores the pervasiveness of gender bias, held even among females, in both adults and young children.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Link between neonatal vitamin D deficiency and schizophrenia confirmed

Newborns with vitamin D deficiency have an increased risk of schizophrenia later in life, a team of researchers has reported. The discovery could help prevent some cases of the disease by treating vitamin D deficiency during the earliest stages of life. The study found newborns with vitamin D deficiency had a 44 percent increased risk of being diagnosed with schizophrenia as adults compared to those with normal vitamin D levels.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Infections during childhood increase the risk of mental disorders

A new study shows that the infections children contract during their childhood are linked to an increase in the risk of mental disorders during childhood and adolescence. This knowledge expands our understanding of the role of the immune system in the development of mental disorders.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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An understudied form of child abuse and ‘intimate terrorism’: Parental alienation

According to Colorado State University social psychologist Jennifer Harman, about 22 million American parents have been the victims of behaviors that lead to something called parental alienation. Having researched the phenomenon for several years, Harman is urging psychological, legal and child custodial disciplines to recognize parental alienation as a form of both child abuse and intimate partner violence. Harman has authored a review article in Psychological Bulletin defining the behaviors associated with parental alienation and advocating for more research into its prevalence and outcomes.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Traumatic brain injuries can lead to long-term neurological and psychiatric disorders

New research suggests that children who suffer traumatic brain injuries are at significantly increased risk of developing new post-traumatic neuropsychiatric disorders, and may benefit from ongoing outpatient follow-up to facilitate early detection and intervention.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Slowed brainwaves linked to early signs of brain cells going haywire due to dementia

To turn back the clock on Alzheimer’s disease, many researchers are seeking ways to effectively diagnose the neurodegenerative disorder earlier. One potential way to do this is by tracking a person’s brainwave activity, which slows down in certain brain regions that are likely to be affected by the disease next, according to recent findings.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Sign language reveals the hidden logical structure, and limitations, of spoken language

Sign languages can help reveal hidden aspects of the logical structure of spoken language, but they also highlight its limitations because speech lacks the rich iconic resources that sign language uses on top of its sophisticated grammar.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Parents shouldn’t worry if their infant doesn’t sleep through the night by a year old

The authors of a study found that a large percentage of healthy babies don’t start sleeping through the night even at a year old. The research team also examined whether infants who didn’t sleep for six or eight consecutive hours were more likely to have problems with psychomotor and mental development, and found no association. The researchers also found no correlation between infants waking up at night and their mothers’ postnatal mood.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Autism and zinc deficiency in early development

Autism has been associated with zinc deficiency in infancy. While it is not yet known whether zinc deficiency in early development causes autism, scientists have now found a mechanistic link. Their study connects zinc, autism risk genes and abnormal neuronal connections associated with autism spectrum disorders.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Mothers prefer daughters and fathers prefer sons

A research group has studied whether parents’ gender preferences and investment in offspring are affected by their status, wealth, education or childhood environment. Instead, parental preferences were best predicted by their sex. These results help to make sense of the often contradictory findings on offspring sex preferences.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Preschool children show awake responses to naptime nonsense words

Hearing has long been suspected as being ‘on’ all the time — even in our sleep. Now scientists are reporting results on what is heard and not heard during sleep and what that might mean for a developing brain. Preliminary results show preschool children seem to have memory traces for sounds heard during nap time.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Children who experience violence early in life develop faster

A study has shown that exposure to violence early in life — such as physical, emotional, or sexual abuse — is associated with faster biological aging, including pubertal development and a cellular metric of biological aging called epigenetic age.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Brainwave activity reveals potential biomarker for autism in children

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) affects children’s social and intellectual development. Conventional diagnostic methods for ASD rely on behavioral observation. Researchers have now identified a potential quantifiable biomarker for diagnosing ASD. Using magnetic brainwave imaging, they correlated altered gamma oscillation with the motor response of children with ASD, which is consistent with previous key hypotheses on ASD. The means of observation potentially offers a noninvasive, impartial form of early diagnosis of ASD.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Cumulative sub-concussive impacts in a single season of youth football

In an investigation of head impact burden and change in neurocognitive function during a season of youth football, researchers find that sub-concussive impacts are not correlated with worsening performance in neurocognitive function.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Father’s nicotine use can cause cognitive problems in children and grandchildren

A father’s exposure to nicotine may cause cognitive deficits in his children and even grandchildren, according to a new study. The effect, which was not caused by direct secondhand exposure, may be due to epigenetic changes in key genes in the father’s sperm.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Gene variants raise risk of migraines in African-American children

Researchers have discovered common gene variants associated with migraines in African-American children. The research adds to knowledge of genetic influences on childhood migraine and may lead to future precision medicine treatments for African-American children with these intense headaches.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Fathers’ postnatal hormone levels predict later caregiving

Dads whose cortisol levels were elevated while they held their newborns on the day of their birth — either skin-to-skin or clothed — were more likely to be involved with indirect care and play with their infants in the first months of their lives.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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When neglected children become adolescents

Many migrant children separated from their parents at the U.S. border, some of them very young, have landed in shelters where they often experience stress, neglect and minimal social and cognitive stimulation. The latest findings tell a cautionary tale about the psychiatric and social risks of long-term deprivation and family separation as children transition to adolescence.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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