Birth order and health of newborns: What can we learn from Danish registry data?
Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskrift › Tidsskriftartikel › Forskning › fagfællebedømt
We examine birth order differences in health of newborns and follow the children throughout childhood using high-quality administrative data on individuals born in Denmark between 1981 and 2010. Family fixed effects models show a positive and robust effect of birth order on health at birth; firstborn children are less healthy at birth. During earlier pregnancies, women are more likely to smoke, receive more prenatal care, and are more likely to suffer a medical pregnancy complication, suggesting worse maternal health. We further show that the health disadvantage of firstborns persists in the first years of life, disappears by age seven, and becomes a health advantage in adolescence. In contrast, later-born children are throughout childhood more likely to suffer an injury. The results on health in adolescence are consistent with previous evidence of a firstborn advantage in education and with the hypothesis that postnatal investments differ between first- and later-born children.
|Tidsskrift||Journal of Population Economics|
|Status||Udgivet - 2018|