Environmental risk and protective factors of adolescents' and youths' mental health: differences between parents' appraisal and self-reports

Ester Villalonga Olives, Carlos Garcia Forero, Alberto Maydeu-Olivares, Josue Almansa, Jorge A. Palacio Vieira, Jose M. Valderas, Montserrat Ferrer, Luis Rajmil, Jordi Alonso*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    4 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    PURPOSE: We investigated the effect of parents' mental health, life events, and home life (among other factors) on adolescents'/youths' mental health, whether such an effect varies when several variables are assessed jointly, and also whether the informant source of the mental health problem modifies the estimations.

    METHODS: We studied a representative sample of 454 Spanish adolescents/youths studied longitudinally (2 assessments, 3 years apart). We considered factors associated with adolescents'/youths' mental health (conduct, emotional, and hyperactivity scores [SDQ]): risk factors (parents' mental health and life events) and mediators (social and financial support). Structural equation modeling was applied. We constructed two models: (a) with parents' SDQ responses and (b) with self-reported SDQ responses (in a subsample of N = 260).

    RESULTS: Model fit was adequate for parents' appraisal. Parents' mental health (p < 0.05) and undesirable life events (p < 0.05) were the most important risk factors. The same model showed poorer fit when self-reported measures were used. Home life exerted a stronger protective effect on adolescents'/youths' mental health when reported by adolescents/youths. The negative effect of parents' mental health was significantly protected by home life in emotional [-0.14 (0.07)] and hyperactivity scores [-0.2 (0.08)].

    CONCLUSIONS: Even in the presence of other factors, parents' mental health has an important effect on adolescents'/youths' mental health. Good levels of home life are protective, especially when adolescents'/youths' mental health is self-reported.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)613-622
    Number of pages10
    JournalQuality of Life Research
    Volume22
    Issue number3
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Apr-2013

    Keywords

    • Adolescents' and youth' mental health
    • Parents' mental health
    • Undesirable life events
    • Home life
    • Structural equation modeling
    • Parental appraisal/self-report
    • QUALITY-OF-LIFE
    • DIFFICULTIES QUESTIONNAIRE SDQ
    • PAST 10 YEARS
    • MATERNAL DEPRESSION
    • EUROPEAN COUNTRIES
    • SOCIAL SUPPORT
    • CHILDHOOD
    • CHILDREN
    • EVENTS
    • STRENGTHS

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