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Age-related gender differences of relevance for health in Swedish adolescents
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Women's and Children's Health.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Women's and Children's Health. (Obstetrisk forskning/Axelsson)
2007 (English)In: International journal of adolescent medicine and health, ISSN 0334-0139, Vol. 19, no 4, 447-457 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

AIM: To compare different areas of adolescent behaviors and self-perceived health with the aim of identify'ing age and gender differences to facilitate planning of public health preventive measures. METHODS: A cross-sectional survey in ten Swedish schools covering all students between 13 and 18 years of age. A validated instrument, Q90, created for use in teenagers, was distributed in the classrooms to 3,216 teenagers. RESULTS: In all age groups, girls had significantly more problems regarding self-perceived health, i.e., general health, abdominal pain, headache, feeling depressed, and suicidal thoughts, than boys. Ingirls, proportion feelingdepressed increased from 28% inthe youngest group (11% in boys) to 51% in the oldest (20% in boys). Similar results were found for all health-related problems. Significant differences were found between both gender and age groups in experiences of being bullied. A significantly higher frequency of boys than girls admitted to committing vandalism (35% vs. 11% in the oldest age group). The frequency of girls feeling overweight increased moderately with age, from 35% at age 13 y to 50% at age 18 y. The proportion of boys feeling underweight increased more distinctly, from 8% at age 13 y to 29% at age 18 y. Tobacco use and alcohol habits were similar in gender comparisons. CONCLUSION: The study demonstrates areas of normative development from early to late adolescence. The striking differences in health perception between girls and boys must be stressed. The results might form a basis for teachers, school health workers, and other health authorities working with adolescents.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2007. Vol. 19, no 4, 447-457 p.
Keyword [en]
Adolescents, health factors, risk factors, gender, Sweden
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-16125PubMedID: 18348420OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-16125DiVA: diva2:43896
Available from: 2008-04-28 Created: 2008-04-28 Last updated: 2010-05-04Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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