The Effects Of Poverty On Children

1428 words - 6 pages

When analyzing children growing up in poverty a lot of factors come into play such as their physical, psychological and emotional development. To grow up in poverty can have long term effect on a child. What should be emphasized in analyzing the effects of poverty on children is how it has caused many children around the world to suffer from physical disorders, malnutrition, and even diminishes their capacities to function in society. Poverty has played a major role in the functioning of families and the level of social and emotional competency that children are able to reach. Children in poverty stricken families are exposed to greater and emotional risks and stress level factors. They are even capable of understanding and dealing with their own emotions as well as the emotions of others. Some of the implications of poverty include educational setbacks, issues with social behaviors and hindrances in psychological and physical development. Poverty deprives children of the capabilities needed to survive, develop and prosper in society. Studies have shown that the income status of a household and even the neighborhoods in which they reside can affect the amount of readily available resources needed to sustain a healthy child. This essay will examine the psychological and physical effects of poverty on children. The psychological aspect will include a look at behavioral problems in children, depression, chronic stress, and conduct disorders such as ADHD. Poverty is known to decrease the amount of psychological and physical capabilities in children which can have long term adverse effects on their wellbeing.
I) SES and Psychological Health in children
In the developing stages of a child, psychological factors play a huge role in the amount of success that a child will achieve throughout their lifetime. Children growing up in poverty are faced with psychological setbacks that include depression, behavioral problems, chronic stress and even instable memory functions. The psychological health of children around the world is detrimental to their abilities to cope, succeed and be able to function normally within social settings. According to Evans and Shamberg ( 2009), “Chronically elevated physiological stress is a plausible model for how poverty could get into the brain and eventually interfere with achievement” (p. 6545- 6549). Children residing in poverty stricken neighborhoods and families tend to experience environmental stressors as well as physical stressors such as educational setbacks, lack of resources and physical demands that are not being met. These stressors can cause a problem in the psychological health of children because of the need to continually adjust to changes and setbacks that stem from poverty.
Chronic stress stemming from poverty can cause a setback in the working memory of young adults and decrease the ability for them to store long term information, critically think, comprehend, write and read ( Evans & Shamberg, 2009, p....

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