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The most common languages Karen speaks are; S’gaw Karen, Eastern Pwo Karen, and Western Pwo Karen. They can also speak English and other languages.

Medical Care/Medical Barriers/Medical Beliefs:

About 10% of Karen don’t have health insurance. Some medical barriers Karen have to face are poverty, language, and genetic barriers. This causes Karen to have trouble seeking medical attention. Although Karen do accept modern medicine, it is often a new experience for them when visiting the doctors. They often believe medical doctors because they are held at such high regard to many people.

Social Hierarchy:

Karen households usually are multigenerational and contains many people. Each family member is treated equally and loved the same amount. Many Karen find many of the American manners to be disrespectful, including; eye contact, loud talking, and body language. Many Karen show respect by crossing their arms when talking, and trying not to disagree with others.


Many Karen today are replacing their traditional meals with fast-food. This is causing an arise of medical complications. Many Karen dishes include rice, meat or fish, and a side of vegetables. They also like to incorporate spices and fish pastes.

Life Expectancy:

The average life expectancy of Karen is 73.4 years.


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