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Peer relationships play a critical role in the development of adolescents, not only for the acquisition of social skills but also for the sense of personal identity and competence. Thus the quality of peer relationships influences actual and future mental health of the adolescent.
SEYLE (Saving and Empowering Young Lives in Europe) is a randomized controlled trial, funded by the EU, evaluating interventions for mental health promotion and suicide prevention. The study comprised 12,395 high-school students from 11 European countries.
We investigated the differences on psychological problems between students with poor and good peer relationships.
1,195 adolescents (mean age 15.3 ± 0.6; 68% females) from the Molise region constituted the Italian sample. Adolescents were identified as with poor peer relationships if they never or just sometimes get along with people of their age, feel that peers like having them in the group and feel that peers were kind and helpful. Psychometric measures were used to assess mental health problems such as depression (Beck Depression Inventory II), anxiety (Zung Self-Assessment Anxiety Scale), well-being (WHO-5) and suicidal ideation (Paykel Suicide Scale).
Adolescents who reported poor peer relationships scored significantly higher (p < .005) on the scales assessing depression, anxiety and suicidal ideation and significantly lower (p < .001) on the WHO-5.
Particularly in adolescence peer relationships may influence psychological well-being and vice versa mental health influences the openness to the others. So promoting mental health and contemporary improve social skills could lead adolescents to a better life.
The present study attempted to assess the complex role of several suicide risk and protective factors in Ukraine.
Suicide rates, prevalence of alcoholism and alcoholic psychosis, prevalence of drug addictions, percentage of urban population and gross regional product for 26 provinces of Ukraine were obtained from the State Statistical Office of Ukraine and the WHO. Questions related to citizens’ religiosity and education were obtained from the European Social Survey. Structural equation modelling (SEM) was applied to research the complex theoretical structure of variables that might influence suicide mortality.
Religion presented strong statistically significant negative association with suicide mortality. the relationship between education and suicide was weak negative and not statistically significant. the relationship between the prevalence of alcoholism and alcoholic psychosis and suicide mortality was weak positive and statistically significant. Medium positive statistically significant association was revealed between the prevalence of drug addiction and suicide. the relationship between urbanisation and suicide mortality was medium negative but statistically significant among females only. No relationship was revealed between gross regional product and male suicide while the relationship with female suicide was slightly negative and not statistically significant.
Religiosity was found to be the protective factor most strongly linked to suicide mortality followed by urbanisation. Harmful role of drug addiction and alcoholism was confirmed. the role of education level and GRP is controversial. No striking gender differences were found.
Smoking among adolescents is still a major public health problem and a global concern. Early onset and long-term smoking are associated with physical and psychological health problems.
To identify risk factors and comorbidities for occasional and daily smoking among European adolescents.
In the context of the Europe-wide 'Saving and Empowering Young Lives in Europe” (SEYLE) study we surveyed 12,328 youths at the age of 13 to 17 from 11 countries. We applied questions from the Global School-Based Student Health Survey to determine nicotine consumption as well as other risk behaviors. Psychiatric symptoms were assessed by the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire, the Becks Depression Inventory-II, the Zung Self-Rating Anxiety Scale,the Deliberate Self-Harm Inventory and the Paykel Suicide Scale.
On average 30.9% of adolescents reported daily smoking and the onset of smoking was reported by 35.3% between the age of 12 and 13 already. Multinomial logistic regression model showed significant correlations between adolescent smoking and migration background, living in single parent households, no physical activity, parental smoking and physical fights. Further it revealed significant associations of adolescent smoking with alcohol consumption, illegal drug use, anxiety, conduct problems, hyperactivity, suicidal ideation, self-injury and internet-dependence.
Our data show that adolescent smoking is associated with psychosocial factors, especially family setting and parental behaviors. Further, smoking and psychiatric problems are highly correlated. Therefore, early preventive measures are necessary and essential not only for adolescents but also for their parents.
Truancy is a serious public health problem that affects adolescents from all countries around the world. It negatively affects almost every aspect in the life, including physical, mental health, social and economical conditions. Young who are habitual truants are more likely to engage in at-risk behaviour like suicidal behaviours.
This analysis investigated the prevalence of truancy and suicidal behaviours in the Italian sample.
to reduce truancy among European adolescents improving mental health in European high schools.
the WE- STAY intervention carried out in 6 different European Countries. In Italy a sample of 2265 High school students (mean age 15.6±0,6; 64,4% females) was selected. Baseline evaluation of students' lifestyle, coping styles, at-risk truancy, suicidal behaviour and mental health issues was collected using a structured questionnaire.
6% has been absent from school for 7 days or more without a valid excuse during the past year (6.6% male); 20,3% as considered as truant student (three or more skipped days per month without a valid excuse in the past year). 4,6% have seriously considered taking own life during past 2 weeks have thought about suicide, and 1,2% tried to take own life in past 2 weeks. The analysis showed as correlation between skipped school and suicidal behaviour (p < .001)
Teens engaging in risk behaviours are at increased odds of depression, suicidal ideation, and suicide attempts (Hallfors et al. 2004). The preliminary We-Stay data confirm the prevalence of at-risk behaviours is higher among truant students.
Truancy negatively affects almost every aspect in the life, including physical, mental health, social and economical conditions.
To implement and evaluate outcomes of three different kinds of intervention against truancy. A mechanistic intervention to stop truancy will be used as control.
To reduce truancy among European adolescents improving mental health in European high schools.
The WE- STAY intervention carried out in 6 different European Countries. In Italy a sample of 2265 High school students (mean age 15.6 ± 0,6; 64,4% females) was selected. The students were randomized into one of four different intervention arms. Baseline evaluation of students' lifestyle, coping styles, at-risk truancy, self-harm behaviours and mental health issues was collected using a structured questionnaire.
6% has been absent from school for 7 days or more without a valid excuse during the past year. 55,0% of the sample has smoked cigarettes; 7,2% drank alcohol 4 or more time during the week (13,9% male and 3,4% female). About the use of drugs, 17,4% of them used drugs at least once in a lifetime. 16% of the students started a fight at least once in a lifetime.
Truancy is often related to mental health problems and at-risk behaviours. The truancy has been the focus of a different policy initiatives, often ended in failure. Through the implementation of WE-STAY is possible to acquire more data on truancy prevalence and its correlated psycho-social and psychiatric aspects, as well as information on school and parents attitudes toward this phenomenon.
According to previous studies the prevalence of adolescent depression is 4–8% both in the USA and Europe. the aim of the current study was to investigate the prevalence of adolescent depression separately in several European countries.
Data were drawn from the Saving and Empowering Young Lives in Europe (SEYLE) study, which included 11 countries (Austria, Estonia, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Israel, Romania, Slovenia and Spain) and Sweden served as the coordinating centre. Depression was measured by the Beck Depression Inventory-II (BDI-II). Adolescents with a score of 20 or greater on the BDI-II were defined as depressed. Multiple imputations were conducted to address missing data.
Out of 14,115 students who consented to participate, finally 12,395 adolescents (5,568 (44.92%) boys and 6,827 (55.08%) girls) were enrolled into the study. the mean age of the students was 14.81 years (SD = .83). Significant differences were detected in the ratio of non-depressed and depressed adolescents among countries (χ2(20) = 385.352 p = .000). the prevalence of depressed adolescents ranged from 7.1% to 19.4%. the prevalence of depressed adolescents according to country in increasing order is: Hungary: 7.1%, Austria: 7.6%, Romania: 7.6%, Estonia: 7.9%, Ireland: 8.5%, Spain: 8.6%, Italy: 9.2%, Slovenia: 11.4%, Germany: 12.9%, France: 15.4%, Israel: 19.4%.
Based on a screening tool our data underlines the importance of taking account country specific prevalence rates of adolescent depression.
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