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Longitudinal associations between bullying and mental health among adolescents in Vietnam


  • Ha Thi Hai Le

    () (Hanoi University of Public Health
    Queensland University of Technology)

  • Huong Thanh Nguyen

    (Hanoi University of Public Health)

  • Marilyn A. Campbell

    (Queensland University of Technology)

  • Michelle L. Gatton

    (Queensland University of Technology)

  • Nam T. Tran

    (Academy of Journalism and Communication
    The University of Queensland)

  • Michael P. Dunne

    (Queensland University of Technology
    Hue University of Medicine and Pharmacy)


Abstract Objectives This study measured bullying roles across an academic year and examined how change in bullying experiences is associated with symptoms of depression, psychological distress, and suicidal ideation among adolescents in Vietnam. Methods 1424 students in middle and high schools completed two self-administered questionnaires, six months apart in 2014–2015. Results Students who were victimised often and those who were classified as highly involved as both victims and bullies at one or both survey times showed significantly higher levels of depression, psychological distress, and suicidal ideation than other students. The mental health of adolescents who were involved in bullying as a victim or bully remained at low levels was generally similar to those not involved in any bullying. However, females who had stable but low level in victimisation or bully–victim status had worse mental health than males with stable-low-level exposure. Conclusion This is the first longitudinal analysis of bullying among adolescents in Vietnam. Persistent and frequent bullying was strongly linked with poor mental health for males and females. A new observation is that Vietnamese girls appear to be more sensitive to low level but long-term bullying involvement than were boys.

Suggested Citation

  • Ha Thi Hai Le & Huong Thanh Nguyen & Marilyn A. Campbell & Michelle L. Gatton & Nam T. Tran & Michael P. Dunne, 2017. "Longitudinal associations between bullying and mental health among adolescents in Vietnam," International Journal of Public Health, Springer;Swiss School of Public Health (SSPH+), vol. 62(1), pages 51-61, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:ijphth:v:62:y:2017:i:1:d:10.1007_s00038-016-0915-8
    DOI: 10.1007/s00038-016-0915-8

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Turner, Michael G. & Exum, M. Lyn & Brame, Robert & Holt, Thomas J., 2013. "Bullying victimization and adolescent mental health: General and typological effects across sex," Journal of Criminal Justice, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 53-59.
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