March 3, 2016

Deborah Gilboa, MD Feedback from TappMD Expert
Deborah Gilboa, MD
Be Proactive
The message here is one we all know - no one sees our kids the way we do. This is wonderful, but can make it too easy for parents to miss their kids' health problems. Get the numbers from your child's doctor. Say "What is his BMI" "Where should she be for growth" at every visit.

Mar. 19, 2009 — With 17 percent of US children between ages 2 and 19 classified as obese, new research shows that parents may not be recognizing their own children’s risk factors. A new study shows that parents are likely to misperceive their child’s weight – especially those parents who are overweight themselves.

Since parents are the most influential factor in laying the foundation for early childhood weight problems, researchers set out to assess the disconnect that exists between a parents’ perception of their child’s weight and the obvious physical appearance of their child. Looking at several studies which examine parental perceptions of childhood obesity generated from the United Kingdom, Australia, Italy, and the United States, Jessica Doolen, MSN, FNP, Patricia T. Alpert, DrPH, APN, FAANP, and Sally K. Miller, PhD, APN, FAANP, found that parents were more likely to misperceive their child’s weight, regardless of the child’s age. Across the literature, mothers failed to accurately recognize the weight of their at-risk-for-overweight or overweight children.

In a comparison of two studies they examined, they found that in the UK only 1.9 percent of parents with children at risk for overweight and 17.1 percent of parents with overweight children accurately identified their child as being at risk for or overweight. In another study, the researchers made note of an interesting finding in the study conducted in Westchester County, New York. In that study the parents who had concern for their child’s excess weight, 76 percent thought this concern was similar to concerns about sunburn, while 67 percent found concerns about weight similar to prolonged television watching.

For more information, see, Science Daily.

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Deborah Gilboa, MD

Doctor G (Deborah Gilboa, MD) of AskDoctorG.com empowers parents to raise respectful, responsible and resilient kids. Around the country and around the world, she works with parents to increase their knowledge and to use the parenting instincts they already have. Doctor G focuses on practical tools and teaching skills, not just dishing out advice.