• Behavior
  • Health
  • Parenting

Kids thrive when dads play

  • Posted
Daughter and father doing homework

Father might not always know best, but he certainly knows what’s good for his children — just as much as Mom.

So says a recent report by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

In fact, mounting evidence shows fathers’ interaction with their children leads to huge health rewards that complement the mother's role.

"Fathers really have a quite impressive impact on their children's health, including how well they do in school, how well they get along with friends, and whether children run into problems like substance abuse or delinquency," co-author Dr. Michael Yogman told the academy in its article.

The report encourages pediatricians to initiate conversations with men and encourage their involvement, starting at birth.

The academy — which defines "father" broadly as the man or men most involved in caring for the child, regardless of the living situation or biological relation — suggests fathers influence their children in some of the following ways:

  • More likely to introduce new words, which can speed language development. In fact, a father’s communication with his 3-year-old can predict language development.
  • Rough-and-tumble play may encourage exploration and taking safe risks. (Calmer interactions with mothers provide safety and balance.)
  • Adolescents of involved fathers are less prone to high-risk behavior and to suffer from depression. Girls show a decreased risk of early puberty, early sexual experiences and pregnancy.

SOURCE:
American Academy of Pediatrics




Back to listing

For a listing of all resources, click here.
Additional Resources
You May Also Enjoy
  • Struggling to get that homework done? Just reach out for help

    Students succeed when their parents are involved and motivated to help with homework. Did you know the Palm Beach County Library system is a prime source for help? Our local experts offer more suggestions here . . .

  • A healthy relationship with your partner benefits entire family

    Caring for young children requires physical work, such as bathing, feeding, playing, running after toddlers and comforting them when they cry. These taxing demands can lead to resentment between parents. That's why it's important to nurture your adult relationship while caring for little ones. Let our local experts recommend how . . .

  • BLOG: Local parks offer great way for kids to try organized sports

    From baseball and football to cheerleading and rugby, competitive teams can impart a range of skills and benefits that translate beyond the sport realm. Read on for details from our local parks expert, who makes it a cinch for your child to connect with the right team.