Why Obesity among Children is a big Health Risk?

Childhood obesity is a matter of grave concern. Children are said to be obese when their BMI (body mass index) comes in the 95th percentile when compared to their peers.  This essentially means that the child has an extremely high weight for their age and height. Childhood obesity, if not controlled well within time, has the potential to perpetuate the problem and result in adulthood obesity issues as well.

Moreover, with obesity, comes a ton of physical and psychological problems. It is therefore essential to control the issue as early in life as possible. However, an important part of the solution is viewing the problem of obesity in its entirety.

How to diagnose obesity

Not every chubby child is obese. The correct measure for obesity is BMI. Hence, it is best to consult a doctor who can examine the child. They can narrow down the cause for obesity. Tests might be recommended as well to rule out thyroid or endocrine issues as their malfunctioning contributes to weight gain. Dr. Essa laboratory is one such credible place to get the testing done from.

What are the causes of Childhood Obesity

A number of factors contribute towards childhood obesity. Lifestyle we have today is one of the major culprits. Rather than playing outside and getting exercise, children today prefer gaming and watching television. As a result, they do not get the sufficient physical exertion required to burn the calories and increase their metabolism.

Moreover, food consumed today is very problematic. Most of the households today use calorie-rich foods like; processed and fast food, sugary snacks and beverages and of course, junk food. These have very little nutritional value but are packed with sugar and fat. Moreover, as they taste rather delicious, children seldom practice self-control, and end up eating more than required. This coupled with lack of activity results in obesity.

However, some children have genetic or hormonal predisposition towards obesity as well. For example, those with hypothyroidism or low thyroid functioning have greater risk of being obese. Medication like steroids etc. also cause an increase in appetite. And thus, with greater food intake comes greater possibility for becoming overweight.

What are the Physical Problems bbese children face:

To fully understand the extent of the problem, it is important to realize the risk factors involved. An obese child has greater risk of: high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease. They are more susceptible to skin problems like acne. Obese children are more likely to run into bone problems; they have higher chance of breaking their bones than a normal child due to the extra weight the bones have to carry. They are also at risk of joint problems as well.

Furthermore, obesity also causes sleep apnea, a condition where the person has difficulty sleeping. They are more prone to fatty liver as well. Also, increased weight causes hormonal issues as well. Overweight children hit puberty earlier than their peers. Obese girls are more at risk of having irregular periods.

Moreover, the physical problems perpetuate and continue with them into adulthood, as most of the obese children become obese adults. As adults, they continue to experience the risks of obesity. For example, since obese children have higher blood cholesterol level, they are more likely to have heart attacks and strokes in their adulthood. It also makes them more vulnerable to getting type II diabetes. They are at a greater risk of cancers like breast and colon.

What are the Psychological problems obese children face:

Alongside physical ailments, obese children have greater chances of running into psychological problems as well. Obesity has been associated with least social acceptability, hence such children are then discriminated against. They are joked about, and incessantly bullied. As a result, they develop social anxiety. This manifests in the form of them having poor social skills.

Obese children then have a greater chance of being depressed. They suffer from segregation in many situations; they are excluded from activities that require physical exertion that they simply are not able to do. Therefore, they cannot mingle with other children. Hence, they do not develop the social skills an average child does.

Children suffering from obesity are also mostly introverts. They seldom have many friends. They therefore prefer the sanctity of their house as opposed to going out in social settings. Due to the nasty and negative comments that they are subjected to, they protect themselves by going in their shells. Perversely, after the society body shames them, they derive comfort from food, perpetuating their dysfunctional relationship with food.

Obese children are also more likely to suffer from poor academic performance. They are more likely to run into problems in school. Due to their poor physical health, overweight children have a greater chance of missing school.

Therefore, the physical risks and the psychological backlash obese children suffer from are a matter of serious concern. And so, not helping the child timely, and assuming that he/she will grow out of the weight it is a wrong strategy. It is unfair to the child to not provide them the treatment to the problem of obesity. They need medical intervention to set them on the correct and healthy path. Visit South City Hospital to get your child the help that can potentially save their life!

Spread the love

Article Author Details

Harry Miller