Multiple risk behaviour and its association with head and neck injuries: a national analysis of young Canadians
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BACKGROUND: Among adolescents, risk behaviors often cluster together and lead to risk behaviour syndromes. Multiple risk behaviors in turn become important determinants of health outcomes, including injuries. METHODS: A national sample (n = 11,415) of Canadian youth aged 11-15 years was examined from the 1997-1998 Health Behaviour in School-Aged Children Survey. Principal components analyses were used to characterize how adolescent risk behaviors cluster together into factors. Associations between these behavioral factors and injury outcomes were explored via multiple logistic regression analyses. RESULTS: Two factors of risk behaviors emerged: lifestyle risks and psychological risks. Strong associations between the lifestyle risk scale and the occurrence of head and neck injuries were identified (P < 0.001 for trend). The relative odds for the highest quintile versus the lowest quintile were 6.96 (95% CI: 3.95-12.26). Similar injury risks were not identified in association with the psychological risk scale. CONCLUSIONS: The findings provide novel information about potential causes of injury to young people and provide a reliable method by which researchers can quantify two determinants of health. These are helpful for injury control research in that they provided a means by which health risk behaviors can be measured and then related to the injury experiences of young people.
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