Advertisement

Maternal and Child Health Journal

, Volume 16, Supplement 1, pp 158–169 | Cite as

Impact of Neighborhood Social Conditions and Household Socioeconomic Status on Behavioral Problems Among US Children

  • Gopal K. SinghEmail author
  • Reem M. Ghandour
Article

Abstract

We examine the impact of neighborhood social conditions and household socioeconomic status (SES) on the prevalence of parent-reported behavioral problems among US children aged 6–17 years. The 2007 National Survey of Children’s Health was used to develop a factor analytic index and a dichotomous measure of serious behavioral problems (SBP) in children. The outcome measures were derived from 11 items capturing parents’ ratings of their children on a set of behaviors, e.g., arguing, bullying, and feelings of worthlessness, depression, and detachment. Dichotomous measures of perceived safety, presence of garbage/litter, poor/dilapidated housing, and vandalism were used to assess neighborhood social conditions. Household SES was measured using parental education and household poverty status. Logistic and least squares regression models were used to analyze neighborhood and household socioeconomic effects on the continuous and binary outcome measures after controlling for sociodemographic and psychosocial factors, including behavioral risk factors, family cohesion, social participation, and geographic mobility. Higher levels of behavioral problems were associated with socially disadvantaged neighborhoods and lower household SES. Adjusted logistic models showed that children in the most disadvantaged neighborhoods (those characterized by safety concerns, poor housing, garbage/litter in streets, and vandalism) had 1.9 times higher odds, children in poverty had 3.7 times higher odds, and children of parents with less than high school education had 1.9 times higher odds of SBP than their more advantaged counterparts. Improvements in neighborhood conditions and household SES may both help to reduce childhood behavioral problems.

Keywords

Neighborhood conditions Household socioeconomic status Behavioral Problems Index Social participation Sleep deprivation Physical inactivity 

Notes

Conflict of interest

None.

References

  1. 1.
    Health Resources and Services Administration, Maternal and Child Health Bureau. (2010). The mental and emotional well-being of children: A portrait of states and the nation 2007. Rockville, MD: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Simpson, G. A., Bloom, B., Cohen, R. A., Blumberg, S., & Boudon, K. H. (2005). U.S. children with emotional and behavioral difficulties: Data from the 2001, 2002, and 2003 national health interview surveys. Advance Data, 360, 1–16.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Xue, Y., Leventhal, T., Brooks-Gunn, J., & Earls, F. J. (2005). Neighborhood residence and mental health problems of 5- to 11-year olds. Archives of General Psychiatry, 62, 554–563.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Singh, G. K., Siahpush, M., & Kogan, M. D. (2010). Neighborhood socioeconomic conditions, built environments, and childhood obesity. Health Affairs (Millwood), 29(3), 503–512.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Pebley, A. R., & Sastry, N. (2004). Neighborhoods, poverty, and children’s well-being. In K. M. Neckerman (Ed.), Social inequality (pp. 119–144). New York, NY: Russell Sage Foundation.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Diez Roux, A. V., & Mair, C. (2010). Neighborhoods and health. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1186, 125–145.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Leventhal, T., & Brooks-Gunn, J. (2000). The neighborhoods they live in: The effects of neighborhood residence on child and adolescent outcomes. Psychological Bulletin, 126(2), 309–337.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Winslow, E. B., & Shaw, D. S. (2007). Impact of neighborhood disadvantage on overt behavior problems during early childhood. Aggress Behaviour, 33(3), 207–219.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Moren-Cross, J. L., Wright, D. R., LaGory, M., & Lanzi, R. G. (2006). Perceived neighborhood characteristics and problem behavior among disadvantaged children. Child Psychiatry and Human Development, 36(3), 273–294.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Schneiders, J., Drukker, M., van der Ende, J., et al. (2003). Neighbourhood socioeconomic disadvantage and behavioural problems from late childhood into early adolescence. Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, 57, 699–703.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Kawachi, I., & Berkman, L. F. (2003). Introduction. In I. Kawachi & L. F. Berkman (Eds.), Neighborhoods and health (pp. 1–19). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Heymann, J., & Fischer, A. (2003). Neighborhoods, health research, and its relevance to public policy. In I. Kawachi & L. F. Berkman (Eds.), Neighborhoods and health (pp. 335–347). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Lemstra, M., Neudorf, C., D’Arcy, C., et al. (2008). A systematic review of depressed mood and anxiety by SES in youth aged 10–15 years. Canadian Journal of Public Health, 99(2), 125–129.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    US Department of Health and Human Services. Healthy People 2020. Available at: http://www.healthypeople.gov/2020/default.aspx. Accessed 25 May 2011.
  15. 15.
    National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS). The National Survey of Children’s Health (NSCH), 2007: The public use data file and documentation. Hyattsville, MD: US Department of Health and Human Services; 2009. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/slaits/nsch.htm. Accessed 28 Sept 2010.
  16. 16.
    Health Resources and Services Administration, Maternal and Child Health Bureau. (2009). The National Survey of Children’s Health 2007: The health and well-being of children, a portrait of states and the nation. Rockville, MD: US Department of Health and Human Services.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Blumberg, S. J., Foster, E. B., Frasier, A. M., et al. (2011). Design and operation of the National Survey of Children’s Health, 2007. Vital Health Stat. 2009;1. Forthcoming. Available at: ftp://ftp.cdc.gov/pub/Health_Statistics/NCHS/slaits/nsch07/2_Methodology_Report/NSCH_Design_and_Operations_052109.pdf. Accessed 8 Feb 2011.
  18. 18.
    Kogan, M. D., Ghandour, R. M., Schempf, A. H. (2012). Introduction to the special issue of articles from the 2007 National Survey of Children’s Health. Maternal and Child Health Journal. doi: 10.1007/s10995-012-1007-x.
  19. 19.
    Peterson, J. L., & Zill, N. (1986). Marital disruption, parent-child relationships, and behavior problems in children. Journal of Marriage and the Family, 48(2), 295–307.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Hofferth, S., Davis-Kean, P. E., Davis, J., Finkelstein, J. (2011). The child development supplement to the panel study of income dynamics, 1997 Users Guide. Chapter 6: Assessments and Scales. Institute for Social Research, University of Michigan. 1999. Website: http://psidonline.isr.umich.edu/cds/usergd.html. Accessed 11 Feb 2011.
  21. 21.
    Simpson, G. A., & Fowler, M. G. (1994). Geographic mobility and children’s emotional/behavioral adjustment and school functioning. Pediatrics, 93(2), 303–309.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Wilkinson, R., & Marmot, M. (Eds.). (2003). Social determinants of health: The solid facts (2nd ed.). Copenhagen: World Health Organization, Regional Office for Europe.Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Singh, G. K., Kogan, M. D., van Dyck, P. C., & Siahpush, M. (2008). Racial/ethnic, socioeconomic, and behavioral determinants of childhood and adolescent obesity in the United States: Analyzing independent and joint associations. Annals of Epidemiology, 18(9), 682–695.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Dong, M., Adams, R. A., Felitti, V. J., et al. (2005). Childhood residential mobility and multiple health risks during adolescence and adulthood. Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, 159, 1104–1110.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Paavonen, E. J., Raikkonen, K., Lahti, J., et al. (2009). Short sleep duration and behavioral symptoms of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in healthy 7- to 8-year old children. Pediatrics, 123(5), e857–e864.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Smaldone, A., Honig, J. C., & Byrne, M. W. (2007). Sleepless in America: Inadequate sleep and relationships to health and well-being of our nation’s children. Pediatrics, 119(suppl 1), S29–S37.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Kantomaa, M. T., Tammelin, T. H., Ebeling, H. E., & Taanila, A. M. (2008). Emotional and behavioral problems in relation to physical activity in youth. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 40(10), 1749–1756.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Page, A. S., Cooper, A. R., Griew, P., & Jago, R. (2010). Children’s screen viewing is related to psychological difficulties irrespective of physical activity. Pediatrics, 126(5), e1011–e1017.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    SUDAAN. (2009). Software for the statistical analysis of correlated data, release 10.0.1. Research Triangle Park, NC: Research Triangle Institute.Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    Macintyre, S., & Ellaway, A. (2003). Neighborhoods and health: An overview. In I. Kawachi & L. F. Berkman (Eds.), Neighborhoods and health (pp. 20–42). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    Sampson, R. J., Morenoff, J. D., & Gannon-Rowley, T. (2002). Assessing “neighborhood effects”: Social processes and new directions in research. Annual Review of Sociology, 28, 443–478.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    Singh, G. K., Kogan, M. D., Siahpush, M., & van Dyck, P. C. (2008). Independent and joint effects of socioeconomic, behavioral, and neighborhood characteristics on physical inactivity and activity levels among US children and adolescents. Journal of Community Health, 33(4), 206–216.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    Singh, G. K., & Kogan, M. D. (2010). Contemporary racial/ethnic and socioeconomic patterns in US childhood obesity. In D. Bagchi (Ed.), Global perspectives on childhood obesity: Current status, consequences and prevention (pp. 71–85). San Diego, CA: Academic Press.Google Scholar
  34. 34.
    Drukker, M., Buka, S. L., Kaplan, C., et al. (2005). Social capital and young adolescents’ perceived health in different sociocultural settings. Social Science and Medicine, 61(1), 185–198.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. 35.
    Meltzer, H., Vostanis, P., Goodman, R., & Ford, T. (2007). Children’s perceptions of neighborhood trustworthiness and safety and their mental health. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 48(12), 1208–1213.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    Evans, G. W. (2003). The built environment and mental health. Journal of Urban Health, 80(4), 536–555.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC (outside the USA)  2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Maternal and Child Health Bureau, Health Resources and Services AdministrationU.S. Department of Health and Human ServicesRockvilleUSA

Personalised recommendations