HOLLYWOOD, Fla. – A large ongoing study of child neurodevelopment finds that children born during the pandemic are showing lower cognitive skills.
Researchers in Rhode Island found that even without being infected by the virus, the environmental changes associated with the pandemic negatively affected infant and child development, including language skills.
“As kids are isolated more they’re not experiencing language the way kids before were able to experience language,” said Avivit Ben-Aharon, CEO and Clinical Director of Great Speech in Hollywood. “The best way to learn language is by experiencing it, going places, seeing things, talking to their families, getting together with other friends. By being isolated, they weren’t doing all that.”
Ben-Aharon said studies have shown that delayed language skills can impact learning throughout life.
Pregnancy depression study
And researchers with the National Institutes of Health have linked depression during pregnancy to changes in placental genes, some affecting brain development.
The researchers conducted a genetic analysis of placentas from pregnant women who participated in a previous study.
They found that a history of depression could impact two genes linked to the brain, possibly affecting the long-term mental development of the child.
Previous studies have found associations between maternal depression in pregnancy and a higher risk of depression in children.