Neighbourhood Factors and Depression among Adolescents in Four Caribbean Countries

Abstract

Background: Past research suggests that perceived neighbourhood conditions may influence adolescents ’ emotional health. Relatively little research has been conducted examining the association of perceived neighbourhood conditions with depressive symptoms among Caribbean adolescents. This project examines the association of perceived neighbourhood conditions with levels of depressive symptoms among adolescents in Jamaica, the Bahamas, St. Kitts and Nevis, and St. Vincent. Methods: Adolescents attending grade ten of the academic year 2006/2007 in Jamaica, the Bahamas, St. Vincent, and St. Kitts and Nevis were administered the Neighbourhood Characteristics Questionnaire along with the BDI-II. Social cohesion, attachment to the neighbourhood, neighbourhood quality, neighbourhood crime, and neighbourhood disorder scales were created by summing the relevant subscales of the Neighbourhood Characteristics Questionnaire. Multiple regression analyses were used to examine the relationships of perceived neighbourhood conditions to depressive symptoms. Results: A wide cross-section of tenth grade students in each nation was sampled (n = 1955; 278 from Jamaica, 217 from th

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