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Health Place. 2015 May;33:25-36. doi: 10.1016/j.healthplace.2015.01.005. Epub 2015 Mar 2.

The influence of the neighborhood physical environment on early child health and development: A review and call for research.

Author information

1
Centre for the Built Environment and Health, School of Population Health, The University of Western Australia, Crawley, WA, Australia; Telethon Kids Institute, The University of Western Australia, Crawley, WA, Australia. Electronic address: hayley.christian@uwa.edu.au.
2
Telethon Kids Institute, The University of Western Australia, Crawley, WA, Australia.
3
Centre for the Built Environment and Health, School of Population Health, The University of Western Australia, Crawley, WA, Australia.
4
McCaughey VicHealth Community Wellbeing, School of Population Health, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia.
5
School of Population Health, The University of Western Australia, Crawley, WA, Australia.
6
Centre for Child & Adolescent Related Disorders, Graduate School of Education, The University of Western Australia, Crawley, WA, Australia.
7
School of Earth and Environment, The University of Western Australia, Crawley, WA, Australia.

Abstract

This review examines evidence of the association between the neighborhood built environment, green spaces and outdoor home area, and early (0-7 years) child health and development. There was evidence that the presence of child relevant neighborhood destinations and services were positively associated with early child development domains of physical health and wellbeing and social competence. Parents׳ perceptions of neighborhood safety were positively associated with children׳s social-emotional development and general health. Population representative studies using objective measures of the built environment and valid measures of early child development are warranted to understand the impact of the built environment on early child health and development.

KEYWORDS:

Child Health; Child development; Environment; Neighborhood; Play

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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