Self-perceived health among adolescents: The role of gender and psychosocial factors

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Abstract

Since adolescents' psychosocial health problems may have major implications for adult morbidity and mortality, investigating their self-perceived health deserves priority. In the lack of limiting illness, psychosocial health variables, e.g., psychosomatic health complaints or health behaviors, play a decisive role in determining adolescents' self-perceived health. Using data on adolescents from Szeged, Hungary (n=1,114), we examined the relationship between adolescents' self-perceived health and a set of psychosocial health status measurements. Findings show that psychosomatic and depressive symptoms contributed significantly to adolescents' poor/fair perceptions of health. Findings also support the relationship between health behaviors and adolescents' self-perceived health. Among boys, drug use and the lack of physical activity are significant predictors. Among girls, smoking may act in a similar way. Diet control is significant in both cases. Besides academic achievement, SES self-assessment and non-intact family status are strong contributes to health perception. Overall, findings show that psychosocial health variables are important influences on adolescents' self-perceived health.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)701-708
Number of pages8
JournalEuropean Journal of Pediatrics
Volume166
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2007

Keywords

  • Adolescence
  • Gender
  • Psychosocial health
  • Self-perceived health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

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