The term self-care refers to circumstances in which individuals are responsible for their own care, safety, and well-being. The amount of time that individuals are in self-care, the factors that predict the use of self-care, and the effects of self-care on individual functioning vary across the life span. This entry examines the characteristics of self-care with a particular focus on middle childhood and adolescence. It considers the factors that predict self-care at different ages and the effects of self-care experiences on social, emotional, and cognitive outcomes.

Early Childhood (0–5 Years)

Although there are tragic cases of very young children being left on their own and unsupervised by adults, the overall incidence of self-care in infancy and early childhood is low. Children under the age of 5 ...

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