Special Issue "Promoting Health for Adolescents"

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Adolescents".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 March 2022.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Zisis Kozlakidis
E-Mail Website1 Website2
Guest Editor
Laboratory Services and Biobank Group, World Health Organization, International Agency for Research on Cancer, 150 Cours Albert Thomas, Lyon 69372 CEDEX 08, France
Interests: virology; genetics; microbiology; laboratory consolidation

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Chronic diseases and premature death can often be linked to social, environmental, and behavioural factors that are subject to modification, especially during adolescence when a number of complex biological, physical, and behavioural transformations take place, as well as when many habits—both good and bad—are formed. Therefore, the actions, exposure, and behaviours during this period leave an indelible mark on the capacity to fulfil one’s health potential.

Approaches studying adolescent health that relate to disease prevention, health protection, health promotion, and health literacy form the core of this Special Issue. Novel discoveries and methods relating to biological, psychosocial, and environmental components are particularly welcome. This new Special Issue on promoting health for adolescents is characterized by advanced research methods, such as prospective longitudinal designs, random controlled trials, meta-analyses, innovative technologies, and the application of these methods and technologies in specific population groups, including clinical populations as well as communities stratified by socioeconomic criteria. Papers addressing these topics are invited for this Special Issue, especially those combining a high academic standard coupled with a practical focus on providing optimal solutions for promoting health for adolescents.

Dr. Zisis Kozlakidis
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2300 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • adolescent health
  • health-promoting behaviours
  • risk factors
  • health inequalities
  • nutrition
  • dietary patterns
  • intervention
  • environmental exposure
  • child health

Published Papers (9 papers)

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Research

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Article
Factor Structure and Psychometric Properties for the PTSD Checklist of Chinese Adolescents in the Closed Period after the COVID-19 Outbreak
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(22), 12245; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182212245 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 272
Abstract
After COVID-19 appeared in China in December 2019, the mental health of adolescents, as a vulnerable group in public health emergencies, was negatively affected by the epidemic and the unprecedented prevention and control measures. The purpose of this study was to investigate the [...] Read more.
After COVID-19 appeared in China in December 2019, the mental health of adolescents, as a vulnerable group in public health emergencies, was negatively affected by the epidemic and the unprecedented prevention and control measures. The purpose of this study was to investigate the factor structure and psychometric properties of the Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Checklist (PCL) among Chinese adolescents. A total of 915 participants completed the PTSD. Confirmatory factor analyses (CFAs) and multi-group CFAs were used to test the factor structure and psychometric properties of PTSD. The CFA results showed that five-factor PCL was the optimal fitting model with satisfactory reliability and validity; moreover, it was suggested that the properties of PCL were invariant across gender, PTSD and asymptomatic groups, early and late adolescents, as well as over time. In summary, PCL is applicable among Chinese adolescents and can be used for effective measurement of PTSD caused by epidemics and to conduct cross-group studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Promoting Health for Adolescents)
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Article
Descriptive and Quasi-Experimental Studies about Moral Emotions, Online Empathy, Anger Management, and Their Relations with Key Competencies in Primary Education
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(21), 11584; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph182111584 - 04 Nov 2021
Viewed by 479
Abstract
Background: Antisocial behaviours make social interactions difficult among students. Moral emotions, online empathy, and anger management are social and emotional variables related to prosocial and antisocial behaviours and health problems. This research aims to assess the impact of Cooperative Project-Based Learning intervention on [...] Read more.
Background: Antisocial behaviours make social interactions difficult among students. Moral emotions, online empathy, and anger management are social and emotional variables related to prosocial and antisocial behaviours and health problems. This research aims to assess the impact of Cooperative Project-Based Learning intervention on these three variables for Primary Education students. Additionally, the relations of these variables with key competencies, such as social and emotional competencies and literacy competence, were studied. Method: This research is made up of two studies, descriptive and quasi-experimental, during regular school hours. The descriptive study was carried out with a sample of 516 primary school students and aimed to assess the development of the three variables, taking into account personal and ethnic-cultural factors. The quasi-experimental study, with pre-test and post-test data, had the participation of 145 students to study the incidence of these variables after Cooperative Project-Based Learning intervention in Primary Education. Results: The results show the relation among the cited variables and the positive impact of the intervention on moral emotions and anger management in the experimental group compared to the control group. Experimental group girls presented higher scores in moral emotions than control group girls. Conclusion: These results open new research lines in relation to the intervention as a programme to prevent the appearance of antisocial behaviours and health problems at school. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Promoting Health for Adolescents)
Article
Changes in Alienation in Physical Education Classes, School Happiness, and Expectations of a Future Healthy Life after the COVID-19 Pandemic in Korean Adolescents
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(20), 10981; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph182010981 - 19 Oct 2021
Viewed by 420
Abstract
This study aims to investigate the changes in the structural relationship between alienation in physical education (PE) classes, school happiness, and future healthy life expectations in Korean adolescents after the COVID-19 pandemic. The data were collected from Korean adolescents using different scales. The [...] Read more.
This study aims to investigate the changes in the structural relationship between alienation in physical education (PE) classes, school happiness, and future healthy life expectations in Korean adolescents after the COVID-19 pandemic. The data were collected from Korean adolescents using different scales. The collected data were analyzed using frequency analysis, reliability analysis, validity analysis, independent t test, and path analysis. The key results were: First, there were partial changes in each of the parameters since the outbreak of COVID-19. Second, before the pandemic, alienation in PE classes negatively affected school happiness, and school happiness positively affected expectations of a future healthy life; however, alienation in PE classes did not affect the expectations of a future healthy life, showing a complete mediating effect. Third, during the pandemic, alienation in PE classes negatively affected school happiness, and school happiness positively affected the expectations of a future healthy life; alienation in PE classes negatively affected the expectations of a future healthy life, showing a partial mediating effect. These findings emphasize the importance and potential of school education, especially PE, in promoting happiness and healthy lives in adolescents. We expect these findings to have practical implications for future research by presenting theoretical and empirical data. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Promoting Health for Adolescents)
Article
Setting Criterion for Adolescent Circuit Exercise Program
by , and
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(19), 9996; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18199996 - 23 Sep 2021
Viewed by 390
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to develop criteria for an adolescent circuit exercise program. The subjects of this study were 5268 middle- and high-school students. It consisted of three types of circuit exercise programs which were conducted in the physical education class. [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was to develop criteria for an adolescent circuit exercise program. The subjects of this study were 5268 middle- and high-school students. It consisted of three types of circuit exercise programs which were conducted in the physical education class. In the result of this study, we have found two significant finding. First, there were statistically significant differences by grade level and gender in three types of circuit exercise programs. Second, in order to improve the utilization rate and convenience of various adolescents’ physical activity environments and the field of school physical education, the gender of each circuit exercise program was classified and the five-grade evaluation criteria were presented. The criteria for circuit exercise program developed in this study will be utilized for various youth physical activities to contribute to improving health and physical fitness. In addition, physical education teachers are expected to use this criteria as a standard for evaluating the physical fitness level of adolescents. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Promoting Health for Adolescents)
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Article
Knowledge, Attitude, Practices and Viewpoints of Undergraduate University Students towards Self-Medication: An Institution-Based Study in Riyadh
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8545; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168545 - 12 Aug 2021
Viewed by 830
Abstract
Rational and responsible self-medication (SM) is not only the key to better health outcomes, but also key to limiting adverse drug events. This institution-based cross-sectional study utilized seven- and four-item scales to assess the knowledge and attitude towards SM. Similarly, SM practices were [...] Read more.
Rational and responsible self-medication (SM) is not only the key to better health outcomes, but also key to limiting adverse drug events. This institution-based cross-sectional study utilized seven- and four-item scales to assess the knowledge and attitude towards SM. Similarly, SM practices were measured using eight scale questions consisting of SM practice during the last six months, type of drug consumed, reason and frequency of SM, and so on. Statistical analyses were performed using SPSS. Overall, 371 students completed the questionnaire. The students with a good level of knowledge and positive attitude towards SM were 60.64% and 66.8%, respectively. About 55.5% of students practiced SM during the last six months using antipyretics (37.7%), multivitamins (36.4%), sleeping aids (20.2%), and anti-histamines (18.6%). Headache (79.2%), fever (37.7%), pain (25.9%), and colds and coughs (25.3%) were the illnesses for which they sought SM. The students admitted that drug side effects (75%), drug resistance (33.7%), drug interaction (41.5%), and poor treatment outcome (28.3%) were the consequences of irrational SM practice. Students (87.6%) propose that extending SM awareness through the Ministry of Health (83%) and pharmaceutical companies (48%) as major platforms would improvise the rational practice. Since AlMaarefa University students will be future healthcare professionals, their perception must be considered and accordingly educated to practice rational SM. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Promoting Health for Adolescents)
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Article
Comparison of Health Awareness in South Korean Middle School Students According to Type of Online Physical Education Classes during the COVID-19 Pandemic
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(15), 7937; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18157937 - 27 Jul 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 762
Abstract
Coronavirus disease 2019 popularized online classes to prevent educational deficits affected by the pandemic. This study aimed to assess the differences in the importance and performance of health awareness in Korean middle school students according to the types of online physical education classes [...] Read more.
Coronavirus disease 2019 popularized online classes to prevent educational deficits affected by the pandemic. This study aimed to assess the differences in the importance and performance of health awareness in Korean middle school students according to the types of online physical education classes they attended during the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic. Overall, 583 participants were selected using a convenience sampling method; the data were obtained through an online survey using Google forms. Frequency analysis, reliability analysis, independent sample t-test, and importance–performance analysis were performed. First, the differences between importance and performance were found to be the most for sleep and physical activity management, and the least for disease and hygiene management. In addition, both groups demonstrated higher importance and performance for hygiene and disease management. There were significant differences in the importance and performance of all the sub-factors. Second, hygiene, disease management, and mental health management were found in quadrant I in both groups, while physical activity, sleep, and dietary habit management were in quadrant III. No factors were in quadrants II and IV. Correspondingly, there was no significant difference in adolescents’ health awareness between the assignment-based online group and interactive online group. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Promoting Health for Adolescents)
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Article
Comparison of Male Adolescents’ Physical Fitness Using Physical Activity Promotion System and Circuit Exercise Program
by , and
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(14), 7519; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18147519 - 15 Jul 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 651
Abstract
The purpose of this study is to compare the physical fitness level of adolescents through a physical fitness assessment and a circuit exercise program. A total of 142 middle school students participated. Physical education class consists of a physical fitness assessment, namely, physical [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study is to compare the physical fitness level of adolescents through a physical fitness assessment and a circuit exercise program. A total of 142 middle school students participated. Physical education class consists of a physical fitness assessment, namely, physical activity promotion system (PAPS), and a circuit exercise program. The PAPS measurements include endurance, flexibility, strength, power, body mass index, and total score. The circuit exercise program consists of twist spine, hand walking, rolling squat, cross knee up, jumping and squat, and level-up pacer. First, there were significant differences in PAPS and circuit exercise program according to grade. Second, there was a significant difference in the results of the circuit exercise program according to the level of each physical fitness variable of PAPS. Third, significant correlations were found in the results of the PAPS and circuit exercise program. The use of a circuit exercise program to measure fitness for adolescents can offer convenience for school physical education and be of value as a measure of physical fitness for adolescents. In addition, the circulatory exercise programs used in this study are thought to be applicable to exercise prescriptions to improve endurance, strength, and BMI. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Promoting Health for Adolescents)
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Review

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Review
In Vitro Recapitulation of Neuropsychiatric Disorders with Pluripotent Stem Cells-Derived Brain Organoids
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(23), 12431; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph182312431 (registering DOI) - 26 Nov 2021
Viewed by 250
Abstract
Adolescent neuropsychiatric disorders have been recently increasing due to genetic and environmental influences. Abnormal brain development before and after birth contribute to the pathology of neuropsychiatric disorders. However, it is difficult to experimentally investigate because of the complexity of brain and ethical constraints. [...] Read more.
Adolescent neuropsychiatric disorders have been recently increasing due to genetic and environmental influences. Abnormal brain development before and after birth contribute to the pathology of neuropsychiatric disorders. However, it is difficult to experimentally investigate because of the complexity of brain and ethical constraints. Recently generated human brain organoids from pluripotent stem cells are considered as a promising in vitro model to recapitulate brain development and diseases. To better understand how brain organoids could be applied to investigate neuropsychiatric disorders, we analyzed the key consideration points, including how to generate brain organoids from pluripotent stem cells, the current application of brain organoids in recapitulating neuropsychiatric disorders and the future perspectives. This review covered what have been achieved on modeling the cellular and neural circuit deficits of neuropsychiatric disorders and those challenges yet to be solved. Together, this review aims to provide a fundamental understanding of how to generate brain organoids to model neuropsychiatric disorders, which will be helpful in improving the mental health of adolescents. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Promoting Health for Adolescents)
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Review
Neighborhood-Level Influences and Adolescent Health Risk Behaviors in Rural and Urban Sub-Saharan Africa: A Systematic Review
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(14), 7637; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18147637 - 18 Jul 2021
Viewed by 1050
Abstract
The impact of neighborhoods on adolescent engagement in health-risk behaviors (HRBs), such as substance use and sexual activity, has been well documented in high-income countries; however, evidence from low and middle-income country settings is limited, particularly in sub-Saharan African (SSA) countries. Neighborhoods and [...] Read more.
The impact of neighborhoods on adolescent engagement in health-risk behaviors (HRBs), such as substance use and sexual activity, has been well documented in high-income countries; however, evidence from low and middle-income country settings is limited, particularly in sub-Saharan African (SSA) countries. Neighborhoods and communities in SSA continue to experience urbanization, epidemiologic transition, and the simultaneous presence of large populations living in rurality and urbanicity. This is a dynamic context for exploring adolescent health challenges. This review seeks to identify and summarize existing literature that investigates adolescent engagement in HRBs when compared across rural and urban neighborhoods across SSA. We performed searches using three electronic databases, targeted grey literature searches and scanned reference lists of included studies. Following dual-screening, our search yielded 23 relevant studies that met all inclusion criteria. These were categorized into six broad themes including studies on: (1) sexual risk taking, (2) injury-related, (3) violence, (4) eating and/or exercise-related, (5) substance use, and (6) personal hygiene. We found that neighborhood factors relating to accessibility and availability of health information and care impacted adolescent engagement in HRBs in rural and urban areas. Urbanization of areas of SSA plays a role in differences in engagement in HRBs between rural and urban dwelling adolescents. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Promoting Health for Adolescents)
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