Involved Dads Lead to Healthier Kids…Research Finds

“Involved dads are making a real difference in the health and well-being of their children, a growing body of research suggests.

“We know that dads who are more involved can contribute really positively to their children’s development,” says Dr. Craig Garfield, an associate professor of pediatrics at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. “And they do it in a unique way that can complement, but not necessarily mimic, the way moms contribute.”

Garfield is the co-author, with Dr. Michael Yogman, an assistant clinical professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School, of a research review, published in the journal Pediatrics, that urges pediatricians and other health professionals to include fathers from the start — not only inviting them into delivery rooms but also making sure they get tips on bathing, diapering, feeding and engaging their babies.

Fathers need to hear that “they can really be successful parents right from birth,” Yogman says.

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