TitleMixed ethnicity and behavioural problems in the Millennium Cohort Study.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsZilanawala, A, Sacker, A, Kelly, Y
JournalArch Dis Child
Date Published01/2018
KeywordsChild, Child Behavior Disorders, Child, Preschool, Cohort Studies, Ethnic Groups, Female, Humans, Infant, Longitudinal Studies, Male, United Kingdom

BACKGROUND: The population of mixed ethnicity individuals in the UK is growing. Despite this demographic trend, little is known about mixed ethnicity children and their problem behaviours. We examine trajectories of behavioural problems among non-mixed and mixed ethnicity children from early to middle childhood using nationally representative cohort data in the UK.

METHODS: Data from 16 330 children from the Millennium Cohort Study with total difficulties scores were analysed. We estimated trajectories of behavioural problems by mixed ethnicity using growth curve models.

RESULTS: White mixed (mean total difficulties score: 8.3), Indian mixed (7.7), Pakistani mixed (8.9) and Bangladeshi mixed (7.2) children had fewer problem behaviours than their non-mixed counterparts at age 3 (9.4, 10.1, 13.1 and 11.9, respectively). White mixed, Pakistani mixed and Bangladeshi mixed children had growth trajectories in problem behaviours significantly different from that of their non-mixed counterparts.

CONCLUSIONS: Using a detailed mixed ethnic classification revealed diverging trajectories between some non-mixed and mixed children across the early life course. Future studies should investigate the mechanisms, which may influence increasing behavioural problems in mixed ethnicity children.

Alternate JournalArch. Dis. Child.
PubMed ID26912571
PubMed Central IDPMC5754876