Young teen girls vulnerable to depression, survey shows – Health
OTTAWA — More girls are vulnerable to depression than boys, according to the Canadian Community Health Survey. Almost six per cent of girls aged 12 to 14 years old said they had a high risk of having a major depressive episode in the year before the survey as opposed to two per cent of boys the same age.
Almost one in three 12 to 17 years-old adolescents rated their health as no better than good in a survey while those who thought their health was poor, fair or good were more likely to smoke, drink or be obese.
The report notes that youth are aware of health effects of smoking and excessive drinking. However,
* 14 per cent of the 12 to 17 year olds were daily smokers,
* girls smoked slightly more than boys,
* boys were more likely to engage in excessive drinking than girls.
When asked to rate their health boys tended to perceive their health as better as opposed to girls. At ages 12 to 14, 73 per cent of both boys and girls reported very good to excellent health. However, by the ages of 15 to 17, 66 per cent of girls dropped the rating of their health while the proportion of boys, who thought their health was very good to excellent, remained the same.
Those adolescents who rated their health as poor, fair or good were less likely to live in a relatively high-income household. As well, the lower the level of education in an adolescent’s household, the worse his or her self-rated health is likely to be.
Eleven per cent of girls aged 15 to 17 had a major depressive episode during the year before the survey while boys of the same age were no more at risk than when they were 12 to 14 years of age.
The Canadian Community Health Survey used data collected in 2000/01 from more than 12,000 teen-agers.
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