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Z Gesundh Wiss. 2010 Aug;18(4):403-411. Epub 2010 Feb 24.

Assessment of health risk behaviours and their interrelationships among young people from two counties of Romania.



The first goal of this study was to assess the prevalence of different health risk behaviours among Romanian young people. Next, the interrelationship between different health risk behaviours as well as age and gender differences with respect to health risk behaviours were examined.


Self-administered questionnaires were completed by a sample of 1,598 junior high school students, senior high school students and university students from urban and rural areas of two counties of Romania.


The results showed that 31% of junior high school students, 59.7% of senior high school students and 64.8% of university students reported more than one risk behaviour. Many of the risk behaviours were likely to correlate with each other and the strongest correlation was found between smoking, alcohol-related behaviour and precocious sexual intercourse. Factor analysis revealed that among junior high school students all health risk behaviours loaded on one factor. In senior high school students and university students the risk behaviours split into two factors, based probably on their frequency and severity. Factor 1 comprised smoking, alcohol-related behaviours as well as precocious sexual intercourse, while factor 2 included less common behaviours: violence, delinquency and illicit drug use. No gender differences were observed regarding the relationship between health risk behaviours.


The results stress the importance of developing prevention programmes among Romanian youth for the behaviours discussed. Further research is needed to identify how to best offer these programmes: as stand-alone programmes or as an integrated set of programmes and whether the same approach has to be taken for younger and older adolescents.

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