141st APHA Annual Meeting

In This section

Social disorder, social cohesion, and adolescent health behaviors

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 : 11:30 AM - 11:50 AM

Susan Seibold-Simpson, PhD, MPH, RN, FNP , Decker School of Nursing, Binghamton University/SUNY, Binghamton, NY
Marc Jambon , Department of Psychology, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY
Hugh Crean, PhD , Center for Research & Evidence-Based Practice, School of Nursing, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY
Richard Kreipe, MD , Division of Adolescent Medicine, University of Rochester Medical Center, Rochester, NY
Background: Interactions between adolescents and their neighborhoods can promote or worsen health outcomes. The purpose of this study was to examine the perceptions of neighborhood social disorder and social cohesion on the adolescent health concerns of sexual behavior and delinquency. Methods: Convenience sample of 437 adolescents participating in a federally-funded, 5 year teen pregnancy prevention program, a community-university partnership situated in recreation centers in upstate New York. Data were collected using A-CASI. Model testing of baseline data was conducted. Results: Participants were 56% female, 87% African American, 20% Latino/a with a mean age of 13.5 (SD = 1.9). Males reported higher rates of sexual activity than females in less cohesive neighborhoods; no gender differences were found in more cohesive environments (B = -.37, t (422) = 2.46, p = .01). Sexual activity increased with age, but only for youth living in less cohesive neighborhoods (B = .12, t (422) = 2.14, p = .03). Social disorder predicted higher rates of delinquency in older males living in less cohesive neighborhoods, while no association was found between social disorder and delinquency for older males in highly cohesive neighborhoods (B = .55, t (421) = 2.104, p=.04). For females, less social cohesion was associated with greater delinquency regardless of age and social disorder (B = -1.01, t (421) = 4.02, p < .001). Discussion: Social cohesion can serve as moderator of social disorder and health concerns. Public health nurses have an opportunity to impact the health of adolescents through individual and neighborhood-level interventions.

Learning Areas:
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related nursing
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Describe neighborhood factors associated with urban adolescent health behaviors. Identify interventions to reduce urban adolescent health risk behaviors.

Keywords: Adolescents, Community

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been co-investigator on multiple studies related to adolescent health. I am a nurse practitioner providing reproductive health services. I completed a fellowship in adolescent health.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.