Pediatric Obesity: A Case Study

Superior Essays
Pediatric obesity is a growing concern within the United States. According to Sarwer and Dilks (2012), approximately thirty-one percent of children in the US are overweight or obese and the number of overweight and obese children has doubled in the last twenty years. The current methods for weight loss regarding pediatric obesity focus mainly on reducing calorie intake, eating healthier foods, and exercising, much like any other weight loss plan. Most consider obesity to be a “medical condition”, but what is overlooked is that psychosocial variables play a role in how it developed, and will also affect the road to treatment (Darwin & Taylor, 2009). In addition to healthier diets, exercise, and eating less, use of parental modeling, reinforcement, …show more content…
According to the Center of Disease Control (2014), to be considered overweight in the pediatric population a child is between the 85th percentile and below the 95th percentile. To be considered obese, a child is within the 95th percentile and beyond. There is a multitude of factors that can contribute to pediatric weight problems. Luzier et. al discusses that biologically there are two hundred genes that can influence a person’s weight. Environmental factors such as cultural influences, location of neighborhood, technology use, and poverty can influence a child’s lifestyle and eating habits. Physiological factors such as inconsistent sleep patterns, and maternal obesity can put a child at risk to be overweight. Boredom, loneliness, anxiety and stress may also trigger children to confide in overeating (Luzier et al., …show more content…
According to Penn and Kerr (2014) many parents have trouble accepting that their child is overweight and often ignore or refuse to believe it is a problem. They also suggest being mindful with the terms that you use to describe a child’s weight. Instead of using the word “obese”, use of the term “very overweight” is preferred and much more accepted. Swain and Sacher (2009) write that the first and most important goal of the nurse is to assess the family for readiness to change and to engage the family with the idea of healthy living. Assessing the whole family for readiness is important because the child will be more likely to be successful with their new lifestyle if everyone is taking part (Swain & Sacher, 2009). Communication in nursing is extremely important and even more so when a delicate subject is being addressed. Personal judgments about lifestyle choices have to be put aside to be able to reach a common goal to focus on the psychological, financial, and social aspects of obesity (Penn & Kerr,

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