Mediators of the Relationship between Social Support and Positive Health Practices in Middle Adolescents

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Abstract

Introduction: This correlational study developed and tested theory to better understand positive health practices (PHPs) in middle adolescents. It tested theoretic relationships postulated between PHPs and (a) social support (SS), (b) optimism, and (c) loneliness, and between SS and the variables of optimism and loneliness. Optimism and loneliness were tested as possible mediators in the relationship between SS and PHPs. Method: A convenience sample of 204 middle adolescents was obtained. Participants completed a demographic sheet and four instruments. Results: There were statistically significant positive relationships between SS (r = .44) and optimism (r = .54) with PHPs. There was a statistically significant negative relationship between loneliness (r = -.39) and PHPs. There was a statistically significant positive relationship between optimism (r = .63) and SS. There was a statistically significant negative relationship between loneliness (r = -.76) and SS. Optimism was found to partially mediate the relationship between SS and PHP; loneliness did not. Discussion: Findings contribute to a more comprehensive knowledge base regarding health practices in middle adolescents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)94-102
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Pediatric Health Care
Volume22
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

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