Adolescent health

Pierre-André Michaud, Venkatraman Chandra-Mouli and George C. Patton

in Oxford Textbook of Public Health

Fifth edition

Published on behalf of Oxford University Press

Published in print September 2009 | ISBN: 9780199218707
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199609673 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Textbooks

Adolescent health

More Like This

Show all results sharing these subjects:

  • Public Health and Epidemiology
  • Public Health


Show Summary Details


Around 30% of the world’s population is aged 10–24 years, and close to 90% of these young people live in low- and middle-income countries. In recent decades, there have been marked shifts in the health problems affecting this age group. Infectious diseases, including HIV and TB, have become prominent and are major causes of death in Africa and South Asia. Accidents and injuries have also become common and are a greater cause of mortality and morbidity in this age group than others. Chronic illnesses, including mental and behavioural disorders, are the leading cause of disability in the age group. There are emerging problems with obesity in many parts of the world, but undernutrition also remains important in lower-income countries.

Various strategies are likely to be useful in responding to the health problems of young people. The health care system should offer ‘youth-friendly’ services that take into account the social context, developmental stage, and emerging autonomy of their young patients. The school setting can be used in many countries to implement and sustain broader health promotion initiatives in the age group. Ideally, young people, their parents, and the broader community in which young people live and work should be engaged in the implementation of preventive health programs.

At a broader level, policies that promote easy access to health care and contraception, traffic safety, limitation of access to licit and illicit drugs as well as weapons, and better access to health foods are likely to have a great effect on the health of this age group. Some of the most effective health interventions are likely to be around ongoing engagement in education and promoting a smooth transition into the workforce.

Chapter.  12149 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology ; Public Health

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.