University of Oulu

Marttila-Tornio, K., Ruotsalainen, H., Miettunen, J. et al. Association Between Psychosocial Problems and Unhealthy Health Behavior Patterns Among Finnish Adolescents. Child Psychiatry Hum Dev 51, 699–708 (2020).

Association between psychosocial problems and unhealthy health behavior patterns among Finnish adolescents

Saved in:
Author: Marttila-Tornio, Kaisa1; Ruotsalainen, Heidi1; Miettunen, Jouko2;
Organizations: 1Research Unit of Nursing Science and Health Management, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
2Center for Life Course Health Research, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.5 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Springer Nature, 2020
Publish Date: 2021-01-22


The aim of the study was to investigate how psychosocial problems in childhood and adolescence associate with an unhealthy health behavior pattern among adolescents in Northern Finland. The study population consisted of 4350 participants, drawn from the Northern Finland Birth Cohort 1986 Study. Health behavior patterns were assessed in adolescence and psychosocial problems in childhood and adolescence. Logistic regression analyses were performed to determine the associations. Several psychosocial problems predicted greater likelihood of engaging in unhealthy health behavior pattern. Externalizing problems in childhood predicted greater likelihood of engaging in unhealthy behavior patterns for girls. For both genders, externalizing problems and inattention in adolescence were associated with unhealthy health behavior patterns. Boys and girls with externalizing problems both in childhood and adolescence had an increased risk of unhealthy patterns. Psychosocial problems contribute to unhealthy lifestyles and should therefore be acknowledged when designing and targeting health promotion strategies aimed at adolescents.

see all

Series: Child psychiatry & human development
ISSN: 0009-398X
ISSN-E: 1573-3327
ISSN-L: 0009-398X
Volume: 51
Issue: 5
Pages: 699 - 708
DOI: 10.1007/s10578-020-00967-w
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 316 Nursing
Funding: This study was funded by Juho Vainio Foundation. Open access funding provided by University of Oulu including Oulu University Hospital.
Copyright information: © The Author(s) 2020. This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit