Browsing by Subject "family"

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  • Sandberg, Erja (Helsingfors universitet, 2012)
    The purpose of this study was to find out what kind of status siblings have in a family in which one child has ADHD. In the background, there was a doubt regarding sibling equality in a family in which one child needs substantially more parental time and attention. In Finland, no similar studies have been made. The study used Brofenbrenner's ecological systems theory. The study involved five families with elementary school age children with ADHD. The families had a total of fifteen children. The parents and the siblings of these families were interviewed. The study was divided into four themes: (1) everyday family life, (2) feelings, (3) family roles and interpersonal skills of the family members, and (4) the importance of siblings in an ADHD child's life. The interviews were analyzed by content analysis. The research problems were: 1) How do parents and siblings perceive sibling status in their family? and 2) What is the significance of siblings in the life of a child with ADHD as assessed by the parents and the siblings themselves? Parents felt that the most significant factors as regards the status of siblings were the way the siblings take responsibly for the family's daily life, the siblings' own understanding of their family, family transparency, taking the siblings into consideration and dealing with their feelings in everyday life. A tight feeling of cohesion was a factor in empowering the family. Parents considered ADHD medication an important element of their family. The meaning of the siblings for an ADHD child's life was very significant. The siblings described their families as positive and lively. They had got used to the qualities and characteristics of the child with the diagnosis. They did not perceive the ADHD child as being a different child in their family. The siblings recognized their parents' fatigue and thought that the parents did not have enough time for them. However, they did not feel that the parents treated them unequally. The siblings reported that they looked after the ADHD child to some degree, but they thought that this was part of family life. The siblings described cooperation as strength of their family. As compared to international studies, converging factors concerning sibling position, sibling relationships and the ideal family functioning came up in the interviews in this study. Siblings' mental problems, which this investigation did not reveal, were an exception. Consistent with previous studies, parents' assumptions about sibling relationships were more positive than the siblings' descriptions. According to the study, an ADHD child's family relationships were a challenge, but with appropriate internal measures the position of siblings in a family can be good.
  • Silva, Wnurinham; Virtanen, Eeva; Kajantie, Eero; Sebert, Sylvain (2022)
    Background: Children and adults born preterm are at increased risk of cognitive impairments, mental health disorders, and poorer quality of life. Epidemiological studies have shown that the impact of preterm birth extends to the immediate family members; however, existing research have focused on parents, and little attention has been given to siblings. Objective: The aim of the systematic review described in this protocol is to synthesize currently available evidence on the impact of exposure to preterm birth (ie, having a sibling born preterm) on cognition, mental health, and quality of life of term born siblings (index child) of preterm born children, and to critically appraise the evidence. Methods: This protocol outlines a systematic review designed in accordance with the PRISMA-P (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis Protocols) checklist. We will include all studies that assess outcomes in siblings of children born preterm. Quantitative and qualitative studies will be eligible for the systematic review, and only studies in English will be included. Firstly, search will be conducted electronically on PubMed, Scopus, Embase, Mednar, and databases and, secondly, manually in Google Scholar and reference lists. The search strategy will include keywords and synonyms, Boolean operators, and text words (ie, within title and abstract). The team of reviewers will screen the search results, extract data from eligible studies, and critically appraise the studies. Analysis will involve both descriptive and quantitative approaches. Meta-analysis will be conducted if appropriate. Results: This systematic review was registered on PROSPERO (International Prospective Register of Systematic Reviews) on December 18, 2020, and it is currently in progress. The findings will be synthesized to determine the effect of preterm birth on full-term siblings and the quality of the available evidence. Conclusions: The evidence derived from this study will shed light on gaps and limitations in the field of preterm birth, more specifically, the effect of preterm birth on full-term siblings. In addition, we hope that understanding the impact of preterm birth on family members will inform targeted interventions and policies for those identified at high risk and how to mitigate health risks. International Registered Report Identifier (IRRID): DERR1-10.2196/34987
  • Vuorio, Alpo; Kovanen, Petri T. (2018)
    This review covers the current knowledge about plant stanol esters as a dietary treatment option for heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia (he-FH) children. The current estimation of the prevalence of he-FH is about one out of 200-250 persons. In this autosomal dominant disease, the concentration of plasma low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) is strongly elevated since birth. Quantitative coronary angiography among he-FH patients has revealed that stenosing atherosclerotic plaques start to develop in he-FH males in their twenties and in he-FH females in their thirties, and that the magnitude of the plaque burden predicts future coronary events. The cumulative exposure of coronary arteries to the lifelong LDL-C elevation can be estimated by calculating the LDL-C burden (LDL-C level x years), and it can also be used to demonstrate the usefulness of dietary stanol ester treatment. Thus, when compared with untreated he-FH patients, the LDL-C burden of using statin from the age of 10 is 15% less, and if he-FH patients starts to use dietary stanol from six years onwards and a combination of statin and dietary stanol from 10 years onwards, the LDL-C burden is 21% less compared to non-treated he-FH patients. We consider dietary stanol treatment of he-FH children as a part of the LDL-C-lowering treatment package as safe and cost-effective, and particularly applicable for the family-centered care of the entire he-FH families.
  • Cavonius-Rintahaka, Diana; Aho, Anna Liisa; Billstedt, Eva; Gillberg, Christopher (2021)
    Aim: To describe the development and implementation of a Dialogical Family Guidance (DFG) intervention, aimed at families with a child with neurodevelopmental disorders (NDD). Design: The DFG components are presented and the content of a DFG training course. Professionals' experiences after the DFG training were evaluated. Methods: Dialogical Family Guidance development phases and implementation process are examined. The Revised Standards for Quality Improvement Reporting Excellence checklist (SQUIRE 2.0) was used to provide a framework for reporting new knowledge. Results: The DFG training course seemed to increase possibilities of a more independent role as a nurse to deliver the DFG family intervention. The project showed that the use of dialogue can be difficult for some professionals. Analysis of the questionnaire completed after DFG training reported a high level of satisfaction. DFG training offered a new approach to deliver knowledge and understanding to families using dialogue, including tailored psychoeducation and emotional and practical guidance.
  • Laivo, Soila Pauliina (Helsingin yliopisto, 2018)
    This thesis answers to a question “Why adolescent girls drop out of school in Northern Uganda?” In Uganda, approximately 70% of the children drop out of public school before 7th grade, the final year of primary school. In northern Uganda, girls drop out of school in more significant numbers than boys, and it happens around the age when girls reach puberty. Northern Uganda is also a particular location because it is recovering from long conflict, affecting strongly the whole population living in the area. The thesis is based on two-month ethnographic fieldwork in northern Uganda during the spring of 2015. To answer the main research question this study seeks to analyse it through taking a look how the school, the community and the girls themselves experience and talk about dropping out, education and growing up in the current post-conflict state of the social life. The thesis argues that the dropout rate is linked to the adolescence as life-stage of becoming an adult that is making the girls to make decisions about the future. The analysis is done through three different perspectives – the educational, societal and personal narratives of the youth. The first perspective is the education and schooling in northern Uganda. It explores the concept of ’educated person’ by Levinson and Holland through sexual education and gender in education. The study shows that Ugandan public primary and secondary education is deriving its ideas and understanding of educated person from the national curriculum, which often conflict with the local concepts of the educated person in the Acholi community, influencing the blamed and real reasons for dropping out. The second perspective looks into the community and the societal pressures the girls are facing when growing up. It will describe family, kinship, marriage and gender in post-conflict context and show how in these areas of life, the past conflict, “loss of culture”, generational conflicts and subsequent disobedience are presented as reasons behind the challenges to stay in school. The third perspective tells the stories of the girls met and talked to during the ethnographic fieldwork in Northern Uganda. It answers the question “What is happening in the life of a girl when she drops out of school?”. It is argued that the girls take actions of a gendered agency to further their lives and become adults. Thus, dropping out of school cannot just be explained as a simple event just suddenly happening without their own will. It will further answer the question “What makes some girls stay in school?” to show how those girls still in school manage the crosscurrents of growing up in Acholiland. The thesis argues that the girls in northern Uganda are active appropriators and social agents who through their own actions contest, struggle and penetrate the structures in their society while also at the same time reproduce them. In Northern Uganda, both the community and the state together with different international agencies will have plans and expectations for the girls’ future. The study shows how the girls navigate the school, community and peer expectations and sociocultural and economic structures to stay or finally drop out of school. These structures are state organised and aid-infused formal schooling and society in amidst of post-conflict recovery which creates a framework where the girls are acting. The school presents the modern and globally orientated educated person, and in contrast to it, the community is looking for to restore ‘traditional’ way of life. It is argued that these two sides are often in conflict and in the middle of this conflict the girls act and solve their way out of it, looking for adulthood and gaining respectable status in the society. The schools, the community and even sometimes the development actors see the girls as passively following the things they will encounter. The thesis will show that they are not. The girls either stay in school or drop out of it, but more often as a consequence of their own decisions and actions than passively because the school or the community could not support them. It is demonstrated that dropping out of school looks more of line a tactic for the future as a respectable grown-up than mere problem to be solved.
  • Akkila, Ilona (Helsingfors universitet, 2012)
    The thesis examines families living in the neighborhood of Kallio in Helsinki. The research focus is on housing as a choice. The idea to investigate this group rose from the media-hyped phenomenon of Kallio becoming more popular among families with children. It attracted the researcher´s interest since until now Kallio had been primarily pictured as the notorious, former worker´s and bohemian´s neighborhood. The primary research questions are: Why do some families reside in Kallio? Is it a choice and how is this choice made? The additional questions are: What characterizes these families and how do they identify themselves with Kallio as a neighborhood? The primary material consists of interviews with local parents. The material consists of ten 1-1,5 h semi-structured interviews and six ad hoc interviews (duration 10-20 min.) Ad hoc-interviews were conducted in communal three parks: in Linjan puisto, Kirkkopuisto and Brahen puisto.The study area is limited to include the sub-districts of Linjat, Torkkelinmäki and Harju. General observation and taking photographs were conducted on this area. Different social scientists, such as Anthony Giddens, characterize the contemporary society as dispersed and fragmented in terms of lifestyles and institutions. Socio-cultural differentiation is a central phenomenon of the postmodern society. Lifestyle choice has become central to the constitution of self-identity. People choose different lifestyles; some families choose an urban lifestyle. Housing research in Finland has largely focused on the housing wishes, 'stated preferences'. Housing choices have mainly been explained from a microeconomic or environmental angle, often aiming at high level of generalization. The context where choices are made often receives less emphasis. The actual choices, 'revealed preferences', have been studied less. In this thesis I argue that choices are composed of wishes, needs and constraints. Interviews and qualitative analysis methods are suitable for this research which aims to look at the qualitative changes in housing choice. The research confirmed that the thematic interview method is a useful way to clarify housing choice as a process. Results are presented by themes: 1) social class, 2) housing situation and background, 3) conceptions of places, 4) housing wishes, 5) self-identity, 6) choice, and 7) urban lifestyle. The results indicate that the families had clearly made a lifestyle choice to live in Kallio. Urban environment was a central wish. The constraints families face were often economic, and the needs were associated with the daily routines, such as connections to public transportation, hobbies, kindergartens, schools and jobs. Families often divided their housing wishes to two groups: dreams and realistic possibilities. Both of these were often located in an urban environment. The central choice for all the families seemed to be an urban lifestyle but their self-identities varied. For all of them urban lifestyle meant enjoying life and living in an exciting environment. Their self-identities were described with three different groups: life-style urbans, suburbans and gentrifiers. The life-style urbans identified themselves to Kallio as it is now, as a socially and culturally multifaceted area. The suburbans were not sure if they identify to Kallio, and they considered moving out. The gentrifiers identified to the aesthetic features of Kallio, and hoped that Kallio would become tidier. The context of choice provides more detailed and realistic information for urban planners and policy makers on how families want to live. Context of choice is important because it is based on the everyday context, and not on unreliable dreams. Literature and the background of this study support the viewpoint that the housing wishes (stated preferences) are completely different than the housing choice (revealed preferences).
  • Arantola-Hattab, Johanna (Hanken School of Economics, 2013)
    Economics and Society – 254
    During the past decade value co-creation has been eagerly discussed in service marketing research. Despite the vigorous interest, the discussion has largely stayed on the theoretical level and perhaps led more to confusion than evolution. In business-to-consumer marketing the focus on investigating value has mainly been on the dyad of provider and customer; however the customer has remained an undefined unit in the interactions. This study argues a deeper investigation on co-creation is needed to clarify the value co-creation concept. The purpose of this research is to explore how a family as a customer experiences co-created service value. This study widens the investigation on co-creation beyond the visible interactions between the provider and a single person to cover often for the provider invisible interactions of different family members. The underpinning framework is the Nordic School’s customer-dominant logic (CDL). This study uses qualitative methodology as the approach to study the research topic. The research method applies ethnography to gain knowledge regarding how a specific group of people interacts with the environment. The empirical study consists of interviews and observations of working mothers who interpret their daily lives, responsibilities, and activities. Based on this background, they discuss their experiences and opinions about their banking service. The empirical study illustrates how mothers discuss their individual and family needs with a bank. Thus, this study widens the scope of a single person being a customer and presents the idea of a family as a customer unit. This study contributes to the current theoretical discussion on value co-creation by presenting a categorisation model for investigating different entities of service value co-creation. The model illustrates how experienced service value is a consequence of co-creation covering both visible and invisible interactions of a family. The study illustrates how service value is experienced by a family as a consequence of value co-creation not only in a dyadic interaction between the provider and an individual, but also in the multiple interactions within a family. The managerial contributions give guidance to companies regarding how to extend their understanding of a customer’s experienced service value and how to become better embedded in their customers’ everyday lives. An increased understanding of different entities of co-creation generates new knowledge regarding how companies can sustain valuable relationships with their customers. The findings illustrate it is essential for a bank as a service provider to shift the focus from dyadic interactions to cover also the multiple interactions within a family as a customer unit.
  • Ristimäki, Elina (Helsingfors universitet, 2011)
    Aims: The recent conversations about disappearing family meals, mental problems of the youngsters and family meals' protective effect on youngsters problems have been the base of this study. The main aim of this study is to find out, what kind of position family meals do have in the youngsters' lives. Study questions are: 1. What kind of conceptions youngsters have of family meals? 2. What kind of hands-on experience youngsters have about family meals? 3. How youngsters feel family meals on a emotional level? a. Are meals positive moments with the family or do they just limit timetables? b. Do the youngsters need family meals if they do not have those in their families? Why? Why not? Methods: The data was collected using stimulated recall -interviews and basic themed interviews. The data was collected from thirteen 8th graders from Pirkanmaa and Kanta-Häme. The interviews were analyzed with the qualitative content analysis. Results and conclusions: The youngsters' concepts of the meals and the family meals were quite traditional, assuming that those are warm, varied and eaten with company. The situation of the family meals was good and those were eaten nearly every day in the most of the families. The youngsters thought that the family meals were important social moments with the family and they were able to talk about important things with the family during the meals. They also felt that the daily eating rhythm was good and they did not felt that the meals would have been somehow restrictive. Even so that the pupils felt the family meals were important, the pupil whose family did not eat family meals did not long those meals. He felt that he was able to share his thoughts and experiences also in other ways. It is important that youngsters have this channel of communication.
  • Sibakov, Tuomas (Helsingin yliopisto, 2020)
    In this work I examine how imōto-moe, a recent trend in Japanese animation and manga in which incestual connotations and relationships between brothers and sisters is shown, contributes to the sexualization of girls in the Japanese society. This is done by analysing four different series from 2010s, in which incest is a major theme. The analysis is done using visual analysis.The study concludes that although the series can show sexualization of drawn underage girls, reading the works as if they would posit either real or fictional little sisters as sexual targets. Instead, the analysis suggests that following the narrative, the works should be read as fictional underage girls expressing a pure feelings and sexuality, unspoiled by adult corruption.To understand moe, it is necessary to understand the history of Japanese animation. Much of the genres, themes and styles in manga and anime are due to Tezuka Osamu, the “god of manga” and “god of animation”. From the 1950s, Tezuka was influenced by Disney and other western animators at the time. His stories and themes had intellectual and philosophical depth that the western counterparts did not have. The works also touched themes that the western animation steered away from, including sexuality, which was not compartmentalized in a similar fashion in Japan as it was in the Western world. His works not only created new genres by themselves, but the constant combination by future generations created thethematic complexity that can be seen in manga and anime today.Tezuka also had a role in underage girl sexualization: his girl characters were an inspiration for the sexuality of little girls, both real and fictional, in the 70s. The western works of Vladimir Nabokov’s Lolita and Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland drew attention to the cuteness of little girls. In combination, sexualized versions of Tezuka’s characters were drawn, at first as a parody. In the 80s there was a boom of drawn girls in sexually compromised situations, or loliconart. Duringthe 80s, the focus shifted away from connotations to real girl imagery and drawn rape imagery towards less violent forms.In 1989, a dubious connection was drawn between otaku, fans of popular culture, including loliconimagery, and a serial killer of small children. The moral panic that followed slowed the spread of loliconin the 90s.Meanwhilein the 90s, an idea of moebegan to form: if fictional little girls are not corrupted by adult sexuality, the girls cause feelings of affection in the viewer. The viewers are affected by moe via isolated, but recognizable tropes, such as cat ears and tail, a speech habit, or twin tails. A part of this research is to examine how well imōto-fits under the loliconcriteria, and undermoe: the characters are sexualized: they are showing having sexual thoughts and expressing sexual activity. After the examination, I conclude that, at least in the works examined, imōto-moe fits under the latter category: the male partners are passive and follow the girl’s lead, the ages are very close, and many of the series emphasize the virtual aspect: to enjoy little sisters, they have to be two-dimensional, outside the laws of reality.
  • Crentsil, Perpetual (2001)
    This thesis studies medical beliefs and practices in Ghana. Its aim is to analyse the kind of social interaction/social relations inherent in informal communication in health-seeking behaviours. The primary aim, however, is to look for people's social meaning of illness-- what sense they make of illness-- in the interplay between informal communication and health-seeking activities. The study is based in Twuim, a rural fishing village in Ghana. It is descriptive, exploratory, and largely ethnographic in approach. The ethnographic data is based on more than five months of participant observation fieldwork and unstructured ethnographic interviews with 33 respondents. Social relations and interaction are important in informal communication in the quest for therapy. The family emerges as the unit for therapy communication and social relations. Thus, three case studies are presented as part of the analysis of the family and therapy discussions. This study shows that people make sense of illness through known relationships with people such as family members and care providers, and known cultural categories such as witchcraft/oracles and biomedical health care promotion. Through these mechanisms, the people derive their social meaning of illness largely from both natural and supernatural ideas about illness. The analytical focus follows Arthur Kleinman's model of sector analysis of medical systems, which uses the structuralist approach. The other framework is the analysis of discourse, following Michel Foucault. One of the main conclusions is a suggestion for the integration of biomedicine and traditional medicine in Ghana as a way to expand the country's health care resources.
  • Ahde, Sirpa (Helsingfors universitet, 2013)
    Early studies have shown that parents in modern society are living their everyday life in the middle of the cultural expectations. Studies also show that children enjoy being in day care, if they have friends there, as well as the opportunity to play and to do something meaningful. Purpose of this study was to bring children's voices heard and to describe the child's everyday experiences. The study was to find out pre-school children's everyday life experiences at home, in family and in day care center. Children live their everyday life at home and in day care centers. This study describes the child's well-being and everyday in the basis of Bronfenbrenner eco-logical theory of education. The data were collected by questionnaire in Hämeenlinna day care centre personnel and its customers in the spring of 2011. For the individual interviews participated 478 children. The data were analyzed by using content analysis and content analysis methods. The study was a qualitative and approach by phenomenographic. The results showed that children want to play both at home and in day care centers. 39 % of the children wanted to spend time with their parents at home and in day care center only 13 % of children wanted to be with adults. Importance of friends in day-care center was emphasized, because 37% of the children mentioned in their responses friends. The study also asked if children are listened by the adults and 63% of the children felt that adults listen them carefully.
  • Akyazan, Abdurrahman (Helsingin yliopisto, 2018)
    Migrants may find themselves in a vulnerable position after migration due to the new social structure (e.g., labor market opportunities, language problems, migration legislation, or networks in the new country). Since they lose their power in the society at large, this change may also affect power relations in their families. As a result, gender roles at home may also change. While existing studies on migration focus on migrants' socio-economic integration into host societies, their family formation and gender roles at home are not well explored. Rather than attributing these roles solely to 'cultural' reasons, I attempt to find answers through an exploration of the immigration experiences. This study has the potential to fill a gap in the literature on migration and gender studies and to contribute to this field in Finland. In this qualitative study, I attempt to explore how Turkish married migrants experience their gender roles and power relations at home after migration. Through thematic analysis of six interviews with three male and three female Turkish migrants, I identified four themes: "status loss after migration," "status loss and willingness to move back," "loneliness after migration," and "rejection of traditional gender roles." One of the most important findings of the study is that those who moved to Finland through family reunification experience a strong sense of status loss, which lead to marital dissatisfaction or a desire to leave the country. Furthermore, labor market opportunities push Turkish women to more traditional roles, while language barriers and a lack of networks hinder their integration into the country. It is important to note that most of the participants reject traditional gender roles as an ideology. However, there are other factors that contribute to their adherence to these roles.
  • Ruuska, Anna Kerttu (Helsingfors universitet, 2014)
    The traditional nuclear family is the most common type of family in our society. During the last decades other kinds of family models have appeared besides the nuclear family. Every child comes across with the diversity of families at some part of their lives. It will happen during their lives or when they start the early childhood education and school. Children should know how to meet the diversity and grow to understand it so that everyone would feel themselves appreciated. Children's books can be a tool to handle diversity of families with children. Through children's books, a child can observe different kinds of families and their lives from a reasonable distance. From a book, the child can find objects to identify to. The child also learns to understand his/her own family as well as other kinds of families. All this widens up the child's picture of the world and teaches how to tolerate dissimilarity. The goal of this research was to find out what kind of families can be found from the popular children's book series Risto Räppääjä, and how the families are represented in it. Another goal was to reflect how educators could use the series in preschool and in elementary school while discussing about diversity of families. The research also tries to broaden the impressions of parents and other educators towards how children's literature can be used variedly when teaching children liberality and how to be a member of the society who accepts dissimilarity. This research was qualitative. The research method was content analysis, where fictional documents were analyzed. The documents were 13 books from a children's book series Risto Räppääjä. Many kinds of families were found from the children's book series Risto Räppääjä. The extended family Räppääjä and nuclear family Perhonen were the most relevant families in this research. These two families broke many of the stereotypes that are placed towards families. Children's points of view and thoughts about families in general also surface from these two families. An adult reader and a child reader find opportunities to reflect the families to their own lives and consider their attitudes through these two families. Also through all the families in the series reader will learn different kinds of ways of living. The children's book series Risto Räppääjä can be used in many ways in preschool and elementary school, for example in conversations, drama and artwork.
  • Kontturi, Janne (Helsingfors universitet, 1999)
    The aim of this study was to find out the meaning family has for a pupil who studies in a special class, or how important family is for the pupil's emotional life, the development of his self-confidence, freetime activities, attitudes on school, plans for further studies and his general social development. The theoretical base of this study was formed by social scientists' theories on postmodern family, which is due to urbanization and urban life style, and theories on family pluralism, the powerful effects that changes in family life have on pupils in special education, the weak self-confidence and low sosioeconomic background among those pupils and the effects of family's sosioeconomic status on pupil's willingness to get education or the theory on the accumulation of education. Study problems were set in the direction determined by these theories and in order to study the accurateness of the theories. The method used in the study was theme interview, which is sometimes also called half-structured interview. The material for the study was collected in October 1998 in a special school in Helsinki. The material contains answers given by pupils in theme interviews and background information about pupils' families, which where collected from the pupils' parents by mail. Content analysis was used to analyze the material. The study showed that it is very important to pupils' attitudes on school and their self-confidence that their families are entire and that the families give them support. The children, whose parents are interested in school education and discuss a lot about things, seem to have positive attitudes on school and good self-confidence, too. The parental support also has an effect on how the pupils spend their free time and on their hobbies, too. Obviously the families have quite an important meaning for pupils in special class, but if the families don't support them, the consequence is problems particularly for the development of self-confidence. The theory on the low sosioeconomic background among students in special education gets support from this study, but nothing can be said about it's effect on further studies. On account of the results it can be suggested that special schools must arrange occasions where the pupils' parents are clearly informed about the important meaning of their support for the pupils' studies and the development of the pupils' self-confidence. The most important sources for the theoretical background were the books written by Jallinoja, Kivinenand Rinne, Moberg, Scanzoni and P. Takala. The most important sources for the method were the books written by Hirsjärvi and Hurme and Pietilä.
  • Komulainen, Kaisla; Mittleman, Murray A.; Jokela, Markus; Laitinen, Tomi T.; Pahkala, Katja; Elovainio, Marko; Juonala, Markus; Tammelin, Tuija; Kähönen, Mika; Raitakari, Olli; Keltikangas-Jarvinent, Liisa; Pulkid-Raback, Laura (2019)
    Background Promoting ideal cardiovascular health behaviors is an objective of the American Heart Association 2020 goals. We hypothesized that ideal health behaviors of parents are associated with health behaviors of their adult offspring, and that higher socioeconomic position in either generation enhances intergenerational associations of ideal health behaviors. Design Prospective cohort study. Methods We included 1856 Young Finns Study participants who had repeated measurements of socioeconomic position (education, income, occupation), smoking status, body mass index, physical activity and diet from 2001, 2007 and 2011, and data on parental socioeconomic position and health behaviors from 1980. We calculated the total number of ideal behaviors in both generations using American Heart Association definitions. Intergenerational associations were examined using ordinal and linear multilevel regression with random intercepts, in which each participant contributed one, two or three measurements of adult health behaviors (2001, 2007, 2011). All analyses were adjusted for offspring sex, birth year, age, parental education and single parenthood. Results Overall, parental ideal health behaviors were associated with ideal behaviors among offspring (odds ratio (OR) 1.28, 95% confidence interval 1.17, 1.39). Furthermore, ORs for these intergenerational associations were greater among offspring whose parents or who themselves had higher educational attainment (OR 1.56 for high vs. OR 1.19 for low parental education; P = 0.01 for interaction, OR 1.32 for high vs. OR 1.04 for low offspring education; P = 0.02 for interaction). Similar trends were seen with parental income and offspring occupation. Results from linear regression analyses were similar. Conclusions These prospective data suggest higher socioeconomic position in parents or in their adult offspring strengthens the intergenerational continuum of ideal cardiovascular health behaviors.
  • Halonen, Anniina (Helsingin yliopisto, 2022)
    Background and aim Complementary feeding is defined as the period during which there is a progressive reduction of breastfeeding or formula while the infant is gradually introduced to solid foods at 4-6 months of age. Improper complementary feeding practices, such as introducing solid foods beyond 6 months of age or having a low dietary diversity could lead to negative infant health outcomes. Therefore, it is important to identify factors that might detrimentally affect complementary feeding, such as maternal stress. This thesis aimed to study the associations between maternal stress indicators, the age of solid food introduction, and dietary diversity during complementary feeding within a Finnish birth cohort. Methods The Health and Early Life Microbiota (HELMi) is a longitudinal birth cohort study. Participants of the HELMi cohort included 1055 healthy infants and their parents, mainly residing in the capital region of Finland. Pre-collected data from the HELMi study were used. The data collection occurred between 2016-2018. The main variables used in this thesis were collected via extensive online questionnaires. Binomial logistic regression analyses were used to study whether prenatal and postpartum stress indicators were associated with the age of solid food introduction and/or the infant’s dietary diversity during complementary feeding. Results Late introduction of solid foods (> 6 months) was less likely among infants whose mothers reported moderate or high prenatal stress (moderate prenatal stress OR=0.66, 95%CI 0.45-0.97, high prenatal stress OR 0.62, 95%CI 0.39-0.98), when compared to infants whose mothers reported low prenatal stress. Maternal stress indicators were not associated with low dietary diversity (0-3 food groups introduced) at 6 months of life. Among infants with a low dietary diversity at 9 months of age, mothers were more likely to report high levels of prenatal stress (OR=4.88, 95%CI 1.27-18.79), when compared to mothers with low levels of prenatal stress. Further, infants with a low dietary diversity at 9 months were less likely to have mothers report low to moderate levels of life satisfaction (OR=0.25, 95%CI 0.06-1.02) when compared to mothers with very high life satisfaction. They were also less likely to report moderate levels of infant health worry (OR=0.18, 95%CI 0.05-0.67) when compared to mothers with no infant health worry. Conclusions This is the first study to look at the associations between maternal stress indicators and dietary outcomes during complementary feeding. Maternal stress indicators were associated with the age of solid food introduction and the infant’s dietary diversity at 9 months, but not at 6 months. In future studies on this topic, a more socio-demographically representative sample should be recruited, and validated tools should be used to collect dietary and psychological data. Health practitioners and family clinic workers should be made aware of the possibly long-lasting effects of prenatal stress and consider its possible effects on dietary outcomes during complementary feeding.
  • Ripatti, Pietari (Helsingfors universitet, 2016)
    Familial combined hyperlipidemia (FCH) is a complex and common familial dyslipidemia characterized by elevated total cholesterol and/or triglyceride levels with over five-fold risk of coronary heart disease. The genetic architecture and contribution of rare Mendelian and common variants to FCH susceptibility is unknown. In 53 Finnish FCH families, we genotyped and imputed nine million variants in 715 family members with DNA available. We studied the enrichment of variants previously implicated with monogenic dyslipidemias and/or lipid levels in the general population by comparing allele frequencies between the FCH families and population samples. We also constructed weighted polygenic scores using 212 lipid-associated SNPs and estimated the relative contributions of Mendelian variants and polygenic scores to the risk of FCH in the families. We identified, across the whole allele frequency spectrum, an enrichment of variants known to elevate, and a deficiency of variants known to lower LDL-C and/or TG levels among both probands and FCH affecteds. The score based on TG associated SNPs was particularly high among affected individuals compared to non-affected family members. Out of 234 FCH affecteds across the families, seven (3 %) carried Mendelian variants and 83 (35 %) showed high accumulation of either known LDL-C or TG elevating variants by having either polygenic score over the 90th percentile in the population. There was large between-family variation in how much the polygenic scores contributed to the FCH phenotype. FCH is highly polygenic, supporting the hypothesis that variants across the whole allele frequency spectrum contribute to this complex familial trait. This reinforces the clinical tenet that FCH is a cluster of overlapping genetic defects instead of an etiologically homogenous disease entity.
  • Tiainen, Marta (Helsingin yliopisto, 2018)
    The thesis is about the relationship between health and wealth. The goal is to show that they are connected to each other, and that improving health can lead to improve of wealth. The first part discusses the effect of health on wealth and vice versa. It shows that better wealth is connected to better health and health increase lead to the wealth increase. Then there is a theoretical model by Grossman (1972) and which was modified by Jacobson (2000). The model shows that the health is seen as a stock and that individual can invest into the health during the lifetime. The model shows also the change, when there is a family without children (partners can invest into each other’s health) and the family with a child (parents invest into child’s health). The wage and education effect is shown and developed by Grossman (1972). The increase in wage leads to increase in health, individual has more money to visit the doctors. The increase in education also leads to increase in health, but in this case individual gets more information on healthy lifestyle and follows it. The literature review shows how education, social status, early childhood, family and nutrition affect the health. Better educated have better health and higher income. An additional year of education increases the life. Lower socioeconomic status increases the probability of consuming unhealthy goods and being less educated. The subjective social status affects the childhood, the mental health and the income. Family plays a crucial role: the mother’s health, parents education, family’s socioeconomic status effect the health of a child and the future income. The low birth weight, mental health problems in childhood and bad nutrition lead to problems in health in the future and lower income. When the connection between health and wealth, and factors affecting the health are known, it is easier to implement policies to increase the total health and wealth. The healthy individual is more productive and it leads to economic growth, what is another topic and also widely discussed.
  • Looi, Valerie; Torppa, Ritva; Prvan, Tania; Vickers, Debi (2019)
    The primary aim of this current study was to compare the role, importance and value placed on music by families with normally hearing (NH) children, to those who had a child with a hearing loss (HL) who wore either hearing aids and/or cochlear implants. A secondary aim was to see whether this differed between the countries. Parents of children aged 2–6 years living in Australia, Finland, and the United Kingdom were invited to complete the Role of Music in Families Questionnaire (RMFQ). Two groups of participants were recruited from each country: (i) parents of NH children, and (ii) parents of children with a HL. The RMFQ had seven subsections covering topics such as music participation, attitudes to music, importance of music in the family, and future perspectives on music. Three hundred and twenty-two families of NH children, and 56 families of children with HL completed the questionnaire (Australia: 50 NH, 25 HL; Finland: 242 NH, 21 HL; United Kingdom: 30 NH, 10 HL). Analyses compared between NH and HL groups within each country, and between the three countries for the NH group, and the HL group, independently. Overall, there were few significant differences between the participation levels, role, or importance of music in families with NH children compared to those with a child who had a HL, regardless of whether the families lived in Australia, Finland or the United Kingdom. Children first started to respond to music at similar ages, and overall music participation frequency, and music enjoyment were relatively similar. The importance of music in the family was also similar between the NH and HL groups. In comparing between the countries, Finnish children had a tendency to have higher participation rates in musical activities, with few other differences noted. Overall, the results of this study indicate that children, regardless of hearing levels or country of residence, have similar levels of music engagement and enjoyment, and HL is not seen as a contraindication to music participation and involvement by the parents involved in this study.
  • Waldenström macroglobulinemia Group (2018)
    Waldenström macroglobulinemia (WM)/lymphoplasmacytic lymphoma (LPL) is a rare, chronic B-cell lymphoma with high heritability. We conduct a two-stage genome-wide association study of WM/LPL in 530 unrelated cases and 4362 controls of European ancestry and identify two high-risk loci associated with WM/LPL at 6p25.3 (rs116446171, near EXOC2 and IRF4; OR = 21.14, 95% CI: 14.40–31.03, P = 1.36 × 10 −54 ) and 14q32.13 (rs117410836, near TCL1; OR = 4.90, 95% CI: 3.45–6.96, P = 8.75 × 10 −19 ). Both risk alleles are observed at a low frequency among controls (~2–3%) and occur in excess in affected cases within families. In silico data suggest that rs116446171 may have functional importance, and in functional studies, we demonstrate increased reporter transcription and proliferation in cells transduced with the 6p25.3 risk allele. Although further studies are needed to fully elucidate underlying biological mechanisms, together these loci explain 4% of the familial risk and provide insights into genetic susceptibility to this malignancy. © 2018, The Author(s).