Can Upward Mobility Cost You Your Health?

The New York Times:

Americans love a good rags-to-riches story. Even in an age of soaring inequality, we like to think that people can still make it big here if they work hard and stay out of trouble. The socioeconomic reality of most of the last four decades — stagnant wages, soaring income and wealth inequality, and reduced equality of opportunity — have dented, but not destroyed, the appeal of the American dream.

Those who do climb the ladder, against the odds, often pay a little-known price: Success at school and in the workplace can exact a toll on the body that may have long-term repercussions for health.

Among American children there are wide socioeconomic gaps on many dimensions of well-being: school achievement, mental health, drug use, teenage pregnancy and juvenile incarceration, to name just a few. Despite the risks that lower-income children face, we also know that a significant minority beat the odds. They perform admirably in school, avoid drugs and go on to college.

Read the whole story: The New York Times

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