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Sep 11, 2019

Topic - Boo-boo bias


A girl falls off her bike.  Her brother falls off his bike.  When parents come running, whose pain do they take more seriously, the boy’s or the girl’s?  Well, studies tell us that adults don’t take girls’ pain seriously because we are more emotional than boys.  Adults see boys as being more stoic, so if they complain, they must really be hurting. Why is this kind of research important?  Biases against girls may come into play when they’re being diagnosed or treated. Often, pain is an indicator of the seriousness of a medical condition.  If a girl reports a high level of pain and the medical staff discounts it, a life-threatening disease may go undetected. Think about the pain management of girls.  If medical staff believe that girls are emotionally reacting to pain and aren’t in distress, then their pain may not be effectively treated, leading to complications.  Don’t minimize their pain or make them feel bad for telling you the truth.