As part of a cross-sectional study, carried out among Turkish mother-infant pairs, the mothers of 269 infants living in Istanbul and 30 living in Stockholm were asked their opinions as to the advantages and/or disadvantages of breastfeeding. The answers were categorized according to the attributes mentioned, quantified and related to the socio-economic status of the area of residence, maternal education, origin, current infant feeding practice and contraceptive method. In Istanbul, 63% of the responses stressed some advantage and 31% some disadvantage of breastfeeding. The contraceptive effect was considered the major advantage and the possibility of milk insufficiency the major disadvantage. In Stockholm, the nutritional value of breastfeeding was considered the most important advantage. No disadvantage was mentioned in Stockholm, despite the fact that breastfeeding durations among the immigrant group was shorter than that of the group in Istanbul. The implications of the responses are analyzed. It is hypothesized that mother-centered advantages, such as the birth-spacing effect of breastfeeding, may be more important motivators for continuing breastfeeding among women living under less-advantaged social conditions, and that, if this is true for some groups of mothers, the infant-centered emphasis in the breastfeeding promotional messages may need modification to include the interests of the mothers, as well.
To identify specific alcohol use beliefs and behaviors among local high school students; to determine whether relationships exist between alcohol use and various sociodemographic and lifestyle behaviors; and to assist in the development and implementation of alcohol abuse prevention programs.
This cross-sectional study involved the completion of a questionnaire by 1236 Grade 9-13 students (86% response rate) from 62 randomly selected classrooms in three Canadian urban schools. Data analyzed here are part of a larger lifestyle survey.
A total of 24% of students reported never having tasted alcohol, 22% have tasted alcohol but do not currently drink, 39% are current moderate drinkers, 11% are current heavy drinkers (five or more drinks on one occasion at least once a month), and 5% did not answer. Reasons stated most often for not drinking were "bad for health" and "upbringing," while reasons stated most often for drinking were "enjoy it" and "to get in a party mood." Student drinking patterns were significantly related to gender, ethnicity, grade, and the reported drinking habits of parents and friends. Older male adolescents who describe their ethnicity as Canadian are at higher risk for heavy drinking than students who are younger or female, or identify their ethnicity as European or Asian. Current heavy drinkers are at higher risk than other students for engaging in other high-risk behaviors such as drinking and driving, being a passenger in a car when the driver is intoxicated, and daily smoking.
Heavy alcohol use in adolescents remains an important community health concern. Older self-described Canadian and Canadian-born male adolescents are at higher risk for heavy drinking. Current and heavy drinking rises significantly between Grades 9 and 12. Students who drink heavily are more likely to drink and drive, to smoke daily, and to have friends and parents who drink alcohol.
Canada's growing ethnocultural diversity challenges health professionals to develop culturally sensitive cancer prevention strategies. Little is known about the ethnocultural specificity of cancer risk beliefs. This qualitative pilot study examined cancer risk beliefs, focusing on diet, among adults from Toronto's Somali, Chinese, Russian, and Spanish-speaking communities.
Group interviews (n = 4) were conducted with convenience samples of adults (total n = 45) from four ethnocultural communities (total 45 participants).
The constant comparison method of data analysis identified three common themes: knowledge of cancer risk factors, concern about the food supply, and the roles of spiritual and emotional well-being. Two areas of contrasting belief concerning specific mediators of cancer risk were identified.
Findings support the investigation of cultural-specific health promotion strategies emphasizing both the maintenance of traditional cancer protective eating practices and the adoption of additional healthy eating practices among new Canadians. More research is needed to enhance our understanding of ethnoculturally specific cancer risk beliefs and practices to ensure the cultural relevance of programming.
In this study, a series of focus groups were conducted to gain an understanding of the nature of stress among Canadian Aboriginal women and men living with diabetes. Specifically, attention was given to the meanings Aboriginal peoples with diabetes attach to their lived experiences of stress, and the major sources or causes of stress in their lives. The key common themes identified are concerned not only with health-related issues (i.e. physical stress of managing diabetes, psychological stress of managing diabetes, fears about the future, suffering the complications of diabetes, and financial aspects of living with diabetes), but also with marginal economic conditions (e.g. poverty, unemployment); trauma and violence (e.g. abuse, murder, suicide, missing children, bereavement); and cultural, historical, and political aspects linked to the identity of being Aboriginal (e.g. 'deep-rooted racism', identity problems). These themes are, in fact, acknowledged not as mutually exclusive, but as intertwined. Furthermore, the findings suggest that it is important to give attention to diversity in the Aboriginal population. Specifically, Métis-specific stressors, as well as female-specific stressors, were identified. An understanding of stress experienced by Aboriginal women and men with diabetes has important implications for policy and programme planning to help eliminate or reduce at-risk stress factors, prevent stress-related illnesses, and enhance their health and life quality.
Canada's Aboriginal peoples face a number of social and health issues. Research shows that Aboriginal youths are over-represented in the criminal justice system and youth forensic psychiatric programmes. Within the literature on sex offending youth, there appears to be no published data available to inform clinicians working with adjudicated Aboriginal youth. Therefore, the present study examines the background, offence characteristics, and criminal outcomes of Aboriginal (n = 102) and non-Aboriginal (n = 257) youths who engaged in sexual offending behaviour and were ordered to attend a sexual offender treatment programme in British Columbia between 1985 and 2004. Overall, Aboriginal youths were more likely than non-Aboriginal youths to have background histories of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD), substance abuse, childhood victimization, academic difficulties, and instability in the living environment. Both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal youths had a tendency to target children under 12-years-old, females, and non-strangers. Aboriginal youths were more likely than non-Aboriginal youths to use substances at the time of their sexual index offence. Outcome data revealed that Aboriginal youths were more likely than their non-Aboriginal counterparts to recidivate sexually, violently, and non-violently during the 10-year follow-up period. Furthermore, the time between discharge and commission of all types of re-offences was significantly shorter for Aboriginal youths than for non-Aboriginal youths. Implications of these findings are discussed with regards to the needs of Aboriginal youth and intervention.
Like most indigenous populations throughout the world who have undergone innumerable cultural changes, the mental health care needs of American Indians are great. Some surveys conducted by the Indian Health Service show high rates of suicide, mortality, depression and substance abuse. Little is known about effective mental health care among American Indians due, in part, to the lack of culturally appropriate models of mental health in American Indians. This article presents a cultural framework in order to understand the mental health care needs of American Indians and discusses barriers to providing effective mental health services to American Indians.
Understanding the beliefs and knowledge related to women's sexuality is important when working with unique religious groups in order to provide culturally appropriate care. An exploratory, descriptive qualitative study generated knowledge, beliefs, and practices related to menstruation, ovulation, and family planning among Low German-speaking (LGS) Mennonite women (n = 38). There is a pervasive silence that surrounds sexuality among this group, who have a limited understanding of the physiological changes they experience. Honoring religious principles and family and community expectations through acceptable female behavior is essential. Adherence to religious principles varies by family but is not shared with the group to avoid disfavor.
BACKGROUND: Recent studies suggest that American Indian and Alaska Native women have important barriers to cancer screening and underuse cancer screening tests. METHODS: We examined the breast and cervical cancer screening practices of 4,961 American Indian and Alaska Native women in 47 states from 1992 through 1997 by using data from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System. RESULTS: About 65.1% [95% confidence interval (CI) 60.2 to 69.9%] of women in this sample aged 50 years or older had received a mammogram in the past 2 years. About 82.6% (95% CI 80.1 to 85.2%) of women aged 18 years or older who had not undergone a hysterectomy had received a Papanicolaou test in the past 3 years. Older women and those with less education were less likely to be screened. Women who had seen a physician in the past year were much more likely to have been screened. CONCLUSIONS: These results underscore the need for continued efforts to ensure that American Indian and Alaska Native women who are elderly or medically underserved have access to cancer screening services.
BACKGROUND: Breast cancer incidence and mortality have been increasing among American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) women, and their survival rate is the lowest of all racial/ethnic groups. Nevertheless, knowledge of AI/AN women's breast cancer screening practices and their correlates is limited. METHODS: Using the 2003 California Health Interview Survey, we 1) compared the breast cancer screening practices of AI/AN women to other groups and 2) explored the association of several factors known or thought to influence AI/AN women's breast cancer screening practices. FINDINGS: Compared with other races, AI/AN women had the lowest rate of mammogram screening (ever and within the past 2 years). For clinical breast examination receipt, Asian women had the lowest rate, followed by AI/AN women. Factors associated with AI/AN women's breast cancer screening practices included older age, having a high school diploma or some college education, receipt of a Pap test within the past 3 years, and having visited a doctor within the past year. CONCLUSION: Significant differences in breast cancer screening practices were noted between races, with AI/AN women often having significantly lower rates. Integrating these epidemiologic findings into effective policy and practice requires additional applied research initiatives.
The authors have undertaken a series of grounded theory studies to describe and explain how ethnocultural affiliation and gender influence the process that cardiac patients undergo when faced with making behavior changes associated with reducing their cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk. Data were collected through audiorecorded semistructured interviews (using an interpreter as necessary), and the authors analyzed the data using constant comparative methods. The core variable that emerged through the series of studies was "meeting the challenge." Here, the authors describe the findings from a sample of Chinese immigrants (10 men, 5 women) to Canada. The process of managing CVD risk for the Chinese immigrants was characterized by their extraordinary diligence in seeking multiple sources of information to enable them to manage their health.