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J Adolesc. 1998 Oct;21(5):621-34.

Promoting adolescent mental health in primary care: a review of the literature.

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Centre for Research in Primary and Community Care, University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield, Herts, AL10 9AB, U.K.


High levels of psychological disturbance amongst adolescents have been linked to behaviours which can damage physical health, and with mental health problems in adulthood. The aim of this review was to see if published literature supports the hypothesis that primary care is a suitable setting in which mental health problems in adolescents can be prevented by early detection and treatment. Medline, BIDS, SIGLE and Psychlit databases (January 1990-February 1997) were systematically searched for English language studies on adolescent health promotion and mental health in primary care; reference sections were checked for earlier work. When offered, adolescent health checks and clinics have been well received with attendance rates of 73% and 83% reported, respectively. Primary care offers a setting for the prevention and detection of mental health problems in adolescents. Further research is needed to determine cost effective ways of using these opportunities.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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