Physical and behavioral health, as it relates to social-environmental factors and developmental considerations, is a key focus at IHDSC. Using a variety of methods, IHDSC affiliates examine health risks, behaviors, and protective factors that support the well-being of children, youth, and adults. Projects range from buffering the negative effects of toxic stress on child development, studying the connection between nutrition and obesity-related cancer, developing strategies to prevent falls in older adults, and understanding the complexities of mental health in diverse cultural contexts.
Optimizing a Daily Mindfulness Intervention to Reduce Stress from Discrimination among Sexual and Gender Minorities of Color
Emerging adult sexual and gender minorities (SGM), especially SGM of color, experience a disproportionate burden of mental health disparities as compared to their older SGM and non-SGM counterparts. Recent research has shown mindfulness interventions as a relevant and promising method through which to reduce the impact of stress and increase well-being in young adults. Given the range of mindfulness interventions and their components, however, this project will work to determine the most effective, efficient, and scalable combination of components to build awareness, purpose, connection, and positive reappraisal among SGM of color.
Reexaming the Link Between Pregnancy Intentions and Early Life Outcomes
Unintended pregnancies are associated with adverse outcomes for both mothers and their infants. This well-known association is the cornerstone of numerous policies, including the contraceptive coverage expansion in the 2010 Affordable Care Act. Recent research, however, has questioned whether these relationships are causal or merely that pregnancy intentions are highly correlated with other factors that have a causal effect on maternal and infant well-being such as poverty. This research hinges on finding no statistically significant relationship between pregnancy intentions and outcomes of interest. We are skeptical of these results because this research is limited by small sample sizes, measurement error, and outdated statistical methodology. We propose to reexamine these findings using updated statistical methods and a large, well-established survey of mothers of newborns which is linked to birth certificate data Additionally, we propose to go beyond previous work by conducting analyses by maternal subgroup. By linking to 2-year follow-up data from multiple states, we can test whether any effect of pregnancy intentions on newborns or their mothers extends into early childhood.
- PI: Dr. Sarah Cowan, Assistant Professor of Sociology
The IHDSC Seed Award Program
IHDSC is committed to funding new projects that bridge multiple domains of expertise and further the mission of the Institute. Eligible applicants may receive up to $20,000 in research support.Learn More about the IHDSC Seed Award