Discussing childhood overweight and obesity with parents: a health communication dilemma
Mikhailovich, K. and Morrison, P.A. (2007) Discussing childhood overweight and obesity with parents: a health communication dilemma. Journal of Child Health Care, 11 (4). pp. 311-322.
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Childhood obesity has reached alarming levels and the problem has assumed great significance for health care staff who work with overweight children and their families. Anecdotal accounts of the difficulties that may emerge when health care providers communicate that a child's weight is outside of the normal range, were a key stimulus for this review. A local government health department commissioned a review of literature on communicating with parents about childhood overweight and obesity. Literature concerned with communicating a child's overweight to parents was limited and, as a result, this review draws upon a disparate body of literature to examine what is known and what might be helpful for health care providers when discussing a child's weight with the child and parents. This paper identifies a range of factors influencing communication between health care workers and parents and offers a number of practical approaches and strategies for facilitating successful communication between health practitioners and the parents of children.
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