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J Affect Disord. 2003 Oct;77(1):41-51.

Risk for depression: a 6-year follow-up of Finnish adolescents.

Author information

  • 1Department of Mental Health and Alcohol Research, National Public Health Institute, Mannerheimintie 166, FIN-00300 Helsinki, Finland. mirjami.pelkonen@ktl.fi

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Few longitudinal studies have attempted to identify risk factors in mid-adolescence for subsequent depression in young adulthood. Mid-adolescence is a critical developmental phase for studying vulnerability to depression due to high incidence and prevalence of depression.

METHODS:

In a longitudinal study, following an urban Finnish community cohort (761 males and 887 females) from age 16, mid-adolescent risk factors for depression at age 22 years were studied. Data were collected by a questionnaire at school at age 16, and by a postal questionnaire at age 22.

RESULTS:

Of the females 116 (13%) and of the males 69 (9%) had depression (S-BDI) in young adulthood. In multivariate analyses baseline depressive symptoms, low self-esteem, dissatisfaction with academic achievement, problems with the law, poor atmosphere at home and having no close friends predicted subsequent depression. Risk factors for males included more 'externalizing' aspects, for females more 'internalizing' factors.

CONCLUSIONS:

Mid-adolescence is an important age to study risk for depression, and self-reported perceptions of psychosocial well-being have predictive value. Preventive efforts can be selectively targeted at adolescents who have been exposed to identifiable risk factors.

PMID:
14550934
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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