The leading causes of death and hospitalization of children in Middlesex-London from 2007 to 2009 was the same as those for Ontario and the Peer Group, with the exception of hospitalization of children under age 10. On average, 45 children under the age of 20 from Middlesex-London died and 2,340 were hospitalized each year from 2007 to 2009.
An average of 24 Middlesex-London infants (less than one-year-old) died per year mainly due to perinatal conditions or birth defects. Male infants were 48% more likely to die than female this age. An average of 440 infants were hospitalized each year at a rate which was lower (by 49% and 60%, respectively) than the rates in Ontario and the Peer Group. The leading three reasons for hospitalization of infants in Middlesex-London were diseases of the respiratory system, perinatal conditions and birth defects. In Ontario and the Peer Group, however, the leading cause of hospitalization was for perinatal conditions constituting 36% of hospitalizations in Ontario versus 20% in Middlesex-London.
About 9 out of 10 mothers with infants in Middlesex-London reported having initiated breastfeeding. This rate has remained relatively stable from 2004 to 2011. Middlesex-London mothers (55.7%) were more likely than not to have breastfed for at least 6 months by 2011. The proportion of mothers breastfeeding for at least 6 months appears to have increased somewhat from 2004 to 2011. This increase, however, is not statistically significant.
Young children: ages 1 to 9 years
In children ages 1 to 9 in Middlesex-London, an average of 8 children died per year, for which the leading causes of death were unintentional injuries (namely drowning and suffocation), followed closely by cancer (namely brain, liver, and lymph and blood cancers) and birth defects. An average of 780 children in this age group in Middlesex-London were hospitalized each year at a rate which was somewhat lower (by 37% and 57%, respectively) than the corresponding rates in Ontario and the Peer Group. The top three causes of hospitalizations for this age group in Middlesex-London were for diseases of the respiratory system, unintentional injuries and diseases of the digestive system. In Ontario and the Peer Group, however, unintentional injuries was ranked as the third leading cause (11% of hospitalizations in Ontario versus 16% in Middlesex-London) and diseases of the digestive system ranked second (12% of hospitalizations in Ontario versus 9% in Middlesex-London).
Youth: ages 10 to 19 years
An annual average of 13 Middlesex-London youth ages 10 to 19 died mainly due to motor vehicle collisions. Males were twice as likely to die than females during this age period. An average of 1189 children in this age group were hospitalized each year at a rate which was slightly higher than in Ontario and slightly lower than for the Peer Group. The leading causes of hospitalization of female youth were pregnancy and childbirth (38%), diseases of the digestive system (15%), and unintentional injuries (14%). For male youth the leading causes of hospitalization were unintentional injuries (35%) and diseases of the digestive system (24%).
Like Ontario and the Peer Group, the vast majority (about 95%) of youth ages 12 to 19 in Middlesex-London reported having good or excellent physical and mental health, according to Canadian Community Health Survey results from 2003 to 2009/10. Almost 9 out of every 10 Middlesex-London youth reported feeling a sense of belonging to the local community in 2009/10. This rate (88.1%) was somewhat higher than what was found in Ontario and the Peer Group and represents a 30% increase from the rate reported in 2003. About 8 out of 10 Middlesex-London youth in 2009/10 reported never having smoked cigarettes; about one-half of Middlesex-London youth reported being physically active during their leisure time; and less than one-third reported having consumed alcohol in the past 12 months