INTRODUCTION: Lay concepts of health and illness give additional important information to the biomedical models. According to the literature of lay beliefs, these concepts significantly affect population's health and illness behaviors and their health consciousness. Detecting children's lay concepts of health means a special professional challenge since they are not able to think in an abstract and systematic way yet, particularly to express this verbally. The draw-and-write method, which is based on projective technique, enables us to map children's lay concepts of health in their 8-10 years of age. AIMS: The main goal of the present qualitative research is to detect 8-11-year-old children's lay concepts of health, illness and risks, by using a technique which has already been accepted and applied at international level. METHODS: Data collection of the qualitative research was going on in two middle sized places of Békés county (Békés and Köröstarcsa), in the second half of 2003. The sample consisted of 128 elementary and middle school students (57% males and 43% females) from years 3-4-5, one class from each place and school grade. RESULTS: Most children apply a mixture of the biomedical and holistic health definitions. Many of them also emphasize the role of healthy lifestyle. In this age, health basically is related to infections since children possess of own experiences primarily about this type of disease. Most frequently children receive information of health and illness from their parents and physicians. CONCLUSION: These findings support earlier findings from international literature that 9-10-year-old children have a significant base of knowledge about health, illness and disease-inducing factors.
|Number of pages||6|
|Publication status||Published - Sep 26 2004|
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