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NCJ Number: 220781 Find in a Library
Title: Mother-Adolescent Health Communication: Are All Conversations Created Equally?
Journal: Journal of Youth and Adolescence  Volume:36  Issue:8  Dated:November 2007  Pages:1038-1047
Author(s): Tanya L. Boone; Eva S. Lefkowitz
Date Published: November 2007
Page Count: 10
Sponsoring Agency: Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award
Bethesda, MD 20892
Grant Number: MH63597
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study examined mother-adolescent conversations about health issues--drugs/alcohol, sexuality, nutrition/exercise--in order to determine the extent to which the mothers addressed these issues similarly.
Abstract: The findings show that the mothers were apparently most comfortable asking their adolescent children questions rather than lecturing them, regardless of the conversation's topic. The focus of the questions and subsequent discussions were primarily on the negative consequences of using drugs and alcohol. Asking questions rather than lecturing adolescents is conducive to an open relationship and is likely to have a greater influence on the adolescent's behavior; however, focusing on the negative consequences of drug/alcohol use carries the risk of having conversations evolve into lectures about these subjects while neglecting appropriate attention to sexual behavior, exercise, and nutrition. Parent education programs on guiding their adolescent children in conversations on health issues should focus on how conversational structure and content can be most influential in fostering parent-child interactions most likely to lead to adolescent attitudes and behaviors that promote their good health. Researchers recruited 37 mother-daughter pairs and 15 mother-son pairs. The mothers ranged in age from 34 to 58, and 65 percent of the mothers were married to the participating adolescents' biological father. The adolescents ranged in age from 15 to 18. Each mother-adolescent pair engaged in four videotaped conversations about drugs/alcohol, sexuality, or nutrition and exercise. Following the videotaping, each participant completed a series of questionnaires. The videotapes were then coded for structure and content. Participants were requested to spend 7 minutes in conversation about each topic. 4 tables and 38 references
Main Term(s): Juvenile delinquency factors
Index Term(s): Alcohol abuse prevention; Drug prevention programs; Healthcare; Juvenile drug use; Juvenile health services; Parent-Child Relations; Parental attitudes; Parental influence; Underage Drinking
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