Stress and safe health behaviour among mid adolescent school going children in urban Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India
Background: During adolescence, that the child is heavily influenced by his surroundings and attempts to change his or her habits and take on to newer habits. This has made relevant the emphasis of safe health behaviour in school and incorporation of stress assessment and subsequent counselling among the adolescent age group. The current study was planned among mid adolescent age group boys and girls, both from government and private schools of Bhubaneswar. Aims & Objectives: To see the association of socio-demographic characteristics with perceived stress among the adolescent children and to find the association of safe health behaviour with perceived stress among the adolescent children and determine the significant factors. Material & Methods: A total of 480 students (240 boys and girls each) selected randomly from 4 government and private schools were included in the study and administered a self-marking questionnaire which elicited information regarding safe health behaviour and also stress scores by using the Perceived Stress Scale which is a 10 points item. Results: Type of school and mother’s education emerged most significant in the sample in terms of stress experienced by the children. Children who were verbal abused by the teachers had higher stress (28.9%) compared to who were not abused (p = 0.012). In terms of health history, any report of sickness or illness in the past 3 months accounted for significantly higher stress levels (37%) compared to the group with no such history (22.5). Conclusion: These findings hint that school environment has a major role to play on the adolescent’s stress levels.