Obesity among Children and its Effect on Children

Obesity among Children and its Effect on Children


Childhood obesity has increased above the perceived level in both developed and developing countries. Obesity tends to harm the physical as well as psychological health of the children. It is estimated that more than 4% of children in the US suffer obesity more than cancer, HIV/AIDS, and diabetes. Obesity in children refers to excess body fat (Perryman & Soditi, 2015). It tends to be aligned to overweight. It is triggered by the variation between calorie intake and calories applied. Several states have applied effective measures to prevent and handle obesity in children (Bhadoria et al., 2015). These include the formulation of policies and the ethical requirements of health care practitioners. This analysis defines the ethical implications of obesity and how it relates to children’s healthcare.

Ethical Implications of Obesity and how it relates to Children’s Healthcare

            The ethical implications of obesity as required by the family, healthcare practitioners, and state raises the debate of who is responsible for ensuring that children have a healthy life. Also, the interventions created whether they are effective in ensuring sustainable refinement or maintain physical and psychological effects. This leads to the concept of competing policy solutions. This implies that the parents and the caregivers to create consumption decisions. Also, they should outline the physical activity schedule as well as healthy diets (Perryman & Sidoti, 2015). The obesogenic environment makes children continue with unhealthy practices since there are food choices that are directed by availability, price, high-fat products, and low nutrient food products. The obesogenic environment relies on society, health caregivers, and the state to solve the obesity issue. Principles outlined by health departments in the states entail handling the conditions of sale, particularly what the school provides since children spend the most time at school (Kersh et al., 2015). The state asserts that there should be limited advertisements for high fat and low-food nutrients food products meant for young children, or the food companies should produce food with the recommended number of calories (Karnik & Kanekar, 2012). Also, promoting healthier alternatives such as fruits and vegetables helps maintain a healthy diet among children and limits certain ingredients.

The ethical implications emerge when the aspects involved include personal autonomy and government authority. The supported ideology is libertarian, where one’s health depends on their judgment. It tends to restrict government authority. While the utilitarian and social contract methods that involve the government, which is deemed effective, sets the voluntary association aside to enhance general welfare. However, the state’s authority, in most cases, is restricted, as most people prefer the libertarian approach (Kersh et al., 2015). The state authority from Mill’s view should be effected when one’s negligence affects others. Many analyses mention that other than the family, caregivers, or nurses who perform under the state’s authority tend to be limited in their performance when it comes to childhood obesity since most parents would state their libertarian ideology.

With the gravity of the childhood obesity issue and the challenges of personal autonomy, the nurse’s and public health practitioners’ perspective seems effective. These practitioners, as they represent the state, encounter barriers that make them stick to the ethical provisions given.  Ethical studies concerning obstetrician-gynecologists demand informed consent and confidentiality (Kersh et al., 2015). Some studies reveal that when schools, society, obstetrician-gynecologists actively engage the families of these children in the formed interventions tend to be efficient than the detached measures. Some of the standards formulated by the United States include menu calorie labeling. Menu calorie labeling was established in 2008, yet, analysts mention that it is less effective since the children are influenced by availability, approach, taste habit, and parental design (Bhadoria et al., 2015). Another code mentioned includes the soft drink tax, where states have imposed taxes on low nutrition food. Nevertheless, taxes have lessened the consumption of soda but raised revenue in other health-related sections hence deemed fruitless. Also, schools have been required to set the needed measures to prevent obesity, yet, as mentioned earlier, this standard is not sustainable when disconnected from other measures and members of the community.

Obstetrician-gynecologists attend to obesity patients, including children, although most parents prefer pediatricians for their children’s treatment.  Most obstetrician-gynecologists advocate for patient-centered counseling to inform parents of the medical risks involved with obesity and the existing strategies and objectives to enhance general health. It is believed that not most children with obesity condition may have adverse medical trauma (Karnik & Kanekar, 2012). Children with other comorbidities or the existence of more disorders than the main one encounter negative impacts. Obesity is formidable since it is linked with diseases such as diabetes, high cholesterol, heart disease, stroke, and certain cancer diseases (Klipstein & Ryan, 2014). With the medical costs being the primary impediment to health care, the psychological effects also prove as an obstacle to health care. These include societal stigmatization of obesity and weight bias.

The healthcare practices for children with obesity include patient-centered counseling. With children, it complexes to address issues such as weight, lifestyle, and a healthy diet, but there are several ways to direct them to solve the obesity issues. These instructions may be given when the parent or guardian is present. These include parents or children supporting healthy behavior. When examining the body mass index as expected by the practitioner, they should direct the patients on physical activity, diet, and nutrition. The patients should be informed on obesity and eating disorders. The patients may find it essential to attend discussions such as their weight with the practitioners hence the needed progress.  The caregivers are advised to ask children how they would term their weight condition or which name to explain their weight (Klipstein & Ryan, 2014). Applying the patient’s language on weight matters reduces the stigma perception hence creating an approachable attitude for sustainable reform.

Pediatricians, as well as the obstetrician-gynecologists, should demonstrate empathy, sensitivity, and support towards the patient. Most practitioners have identified that it is challenging to gain the past medical records of patients, thus complex to note how they’ve been treated. The caregivers should be ready to comprehend the emotional reaction of obesity stigma. This implies that they should show less resentment and partiality (Karnik & Kanekar, 2012). The objective is to regard the patient’s approach and assimilate them into the practitioner’s decision making.  Pediatricians and the obstetrician-gynecologists need to apply motivational words to advice on healthy lifestyle changes. The motivational words technique has helped enhance weight reduction, physical activity, and healthy diets (Klipstein & Ryan, 2014). Not all patients may receive the information positively hence not practice them, but practitioners are needed to respect the patient’s decision. The caregivers should also consider forming a supportive clinical setting, along with consultations and referrals.

In conclusion, obesity in several nations has risen above the anticipated levels. In Use, more than 4% of the children experience obesity than other diseases. Nations have applied numerous interventions and policies to ensure sustainable reform but have been restricted by the libertarian concept. The libertarian concept ignited the nature of ethical implications for health practitioners. The caregivers tend to react to patients’ perspectives and emotions to perform their activities. This is significant for children’s healthcare.