ABSTRACT: Hyperactivity and inattention are major effects of prenatal alcohol exposure (PAE). Although predominantly women from the high social class consume alcohol during pregnancy, children from the low social class are particularly affected by the adverse effects of PAE. This study aimed to test the hypothesis of a social gradient in hyperactivity/inattention in children with PAE.
Children with PAE (N=996) enrolled in the German Health Interview and Examination Survey for Children and Adolescents (KiGGS) were studied. KiGGS was designed and conducted by Robert Koch Institute (RKI) as a nationwide representative survey on the health of German children and adolescents aged 0-17 years. The data include information given by parents and adolescents on the physical and mental health, sociodemographic features, life circumstances and conditions.
PAE children with a middle and low parental socioeconomic status (SES) are on a higher risk of developing hyperactivity/inattention compared to those with high parental SES. Cultural-behavioral factors had the strongest effect in the explanation of social inequalities in hyperactivity/inattention among children with PAE.
Cultural-behavioral factors, particularly health-related behaviors, need a significant improvement in children from the low and middle social class. To reduce social inequalities in hyperactivity in children with PAE, interventions have to focus on the dietary and television habits of the child by reaching parents from the low and middle social class.
Klinische Pädiatrie 07/2012; 224(5):303-8. · 1.77 Impact Factor