Monday, 30 April 2018

Prevalence and Health Impact of Violence Among High School Youth in Vlora City



In recent years, researchers have focused attention on high school youth who are exposed to differents types of violence with serious lifelong consequences. The studies conducted in Albania show that many children suffer needlessly from abuse and neglect. The data related to this phenomenon which have such a high impact on the health and well being, made it necessary for me to evaluate the prevalence and health consequences of the violence on teenagers in the city of Vlora too, in order to develop programs and methods for the prevention and treatment of violence. This descriptive transversal study included 350 teens from 3 high schools in the city of Vlora, one public school and two non public ones randomly selected. A structured and self-administered questionnaire was used for data collection. A p values ≤ 0,05 were accepted as statistically significant. The results showed that the prevalence of the violence on teenagers of Vlora district was 85.7%, with higher result in public schools than non public ones (p=0.0152<0.05). Males result to be more violated than female (p=0.0168). The highest percentage of the violated age was 15-16 years old with 63.3%. The physical violence was found to be present in 46.6% of the cases, psychological violence 20 %, sexual violence 16.7 %, verbale violence in 10%, economical violence 6.7 %. Psychological consequences dominated as health damage from the abuse. 65% of participants were not treated and only 5% had psychological support. The schools and government professionals should work on the awareness of the teens in order to acknowledge the violence, its forms and the wrong concepts of beating or hitting as educative. The health policies for the promotion, prevention and treatment of the violence whenever and where ever it happens.

The World Health Organization defines violence as the use of physical force or real threat power against oneself, against another person, or against a group or community, which either results in or has any chance of resulting in injury, death, psychological harm, development disability, or deprivation. Thus, violent behavior, especially the use of physical violence, is a significant public health problem worldwide because it has serious personal and social consequences. Young victims are more prone to showing symptoms of depression and anxiety, engaging in unhealthy behaviours, such as smoking, alcohol and drug use, or displaying anti-social behaviours and suicidal thoughts. Previous research has shown a high prevalence of violent behavior through physical struggle. Pickett et al. reported that adolescent involvement in fighting in North America and Europe varied among countries, ranging from 37% to 69% for boys and 13% to 32% for girls. 

Youth violence is product of social, cultural, economic and biologic factors. This phenomenon happens in all the European countries. They are one of the causes of health imparity and social inequality, where the groups in disadvantage are in higher risks. Other studies concerning the behaviors of life evaluate as a contributing factor of violence the way parents and children relate, especially when they use violent communication and behavioral forms; when there is little parental control over their children’s school and social life; when adolescents evade from school, relegate their school tasks and have low school performance; when they stay out of the house for long periods and do not notify their parents about their whereabouts in their free time. 

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