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Parental Income and Risk Behaviour as Determinants of Adolescent Health

  • Ivar Pettersen


    (Department of Economics, Norwegian University of Science and Technology)

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    The relationship between health and income among adults is well established. Adolescent health and parental income has not received the same attention. In this study we look at household income both as a direct determinant of adolescent health and as an important factor in relation to behavioural patterns among adolescents. The data used is from two surveys conducted in a Norwegian county (n=9 000, which accounts for 90 % of the age-group 13-19 in a Norwegian county). The results indicate that income works partly through some health-promoting behaviours but, still has a significant direct effect on adolescent health. We also find that high household-income does not cushion the effect of health-deteriorating behaviour, but it strengthens the probability that adolescents take part in physical activity. Household income is important in terms of increasing the probability that adolescents actively participate in sports and physical activity in general.

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    Paper provided by Department of Economics, Norwegian University of Science and Technology in its series Working Paper Series with number 10709.

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    Length: 31 pages
    Date of creation: 12 Aug 2009
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:nst:samfok:10709
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    1. Joshua Angrist & Alan B. Krueger, 2001. "Instrumental Variables and the Search for Identification: From Supply and Demand to Natural Experiments," NBER Working Papers 8456, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Alison Aughinbaugh & Maury Gittleman, 2003. "Maternal Employment and Adolescent Risky Behavior," Labor and Demography 0302002, EconWPA.
    3. James P. Smith, 1999. "Healthy Bodies and Thick Wallets: The Dual Relation between Health and Economic Status," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 13(2), pages 145-166, Spring.
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