peer pressure

There’s more than one way to build resilience

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By Gary Lovatt

Working intensively with partners from Health, Crime and Education it’s hard to get through a meeting these days without the mention of needing to build ‘better resilience’ in young people.

Indeed it’s refreshing that after years of apparent compartmentalisation of behaviours into different areas (alcohol, smoking, sexual activity, anti-social behaviour, self-harming etc) we’re learning that attitudes and behaviours generally start with addressing the protective factors that allow young people to make better, informed choices.

So how do you achieve and measure resilience? The answer is that you need to adopt a multi-targeted strategy, starting with examining the determinants of those behaviours in more detail. Read the rest of this entry »

Smoking and Drinking Behaviours are Improving

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With 207,000 11-15 year olds estimated to take up smoking and around 80% of under 18 smokers continuing to smoke throughout adulthood, helping young people to better understand risks and norms continues to be an important marker in terms of risk taking and health. Read the rest of this entry »

#Neknomination – Just a bit of fun?

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Gone are the days of passing on a chain email to 12 friends or risk never finding your true love – another online trend is well under way and it’s currently unavoidable on social media. ’Neknomination’ – the online drinking game popular with students that is sweeping the nation (and world) and most recently making the news for less than fun reasons. Read the rest of this entry »

My Imaginary Friends Do It . . . so I will too.

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You are already familiar with the term ‘social norms’ – the pattern of behaviour in any social group that is accepted as normal and to which all members of that group are expected to conform. This is a good thing when applied to behaviours that are beneficial to the greater society – drink driving for example, or not allowing your dog to foul the path, are both considerable changes to social norms driven by the attitudes of those around us. Social norms, in effect, create social order. Read the rest of this entry »