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You are required to describe a population or community and discuss the social determinants of health and health issues within your chosen population or community. Reflect on what you learnt in your mental health, Child health and Culture units and think back to Foundations when you studied developmental theories. You need to define your population and present demographic and epidemiological data to support your description of the health issues. You need to narrow down your health issues and show the significance of a particular issue to your chosen population or sub-group of your population. The health issue and population will be the central part of your next assignment so they must be clearly stated in your conclusion. Please remember to focus on a health issue for which you can develop a health promotion program. It is highly recommended that you undertake assignment 2 at the same time.
Teenagers are at a period of transition when they move from their childhood to the self-dependent phase. The young individuals commence taking their own decision gradually at this stage of life. In the early teenage years in between 12 to 15 years of age, the individual experiences physical changes as they enter puberty and begin the phase of sexual maturation. During this phase, the adolescents begin to rely on themselves and friends and start making their own decisions (Child & Adolescent Community Health, 2011). In between 15 to 19 years, the physical changes continue to develop, and their bonding with their friends becomes heavier (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare 2011, 2011). It is a very crucial age group in which a wrong decision may affect their health and life critically. Selection of wrong behaviour pattern, engaging in unsafe activities such as substance abuse and alcoholism, education and employment decides the entire life. It is observed that good childhood support from family and friends help in the better transition and prevent risky behaviour among adolescents (Child & Adolescent Community Health, 2011).
The health condition of teenagers is determined by environmental, social, cultural and economic factors. These factors include diet, education, employment, physical activity, habits such as smoking and drinking, availability of health services. These factors may lead to various health conditions associated with mental health, injuries, poisoning, substance use, chronic health conditions, various communicable diseases, oral conditions and, sudden deaths related to suicide and accidents (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare 2011, 2011). This essay further discusses the health issues among the adolescents of Australia, mental disorders among teenagers and the health determinants associated with mental disorders among the teenagers in Australia.
According to National Youth Week (2013), 4,280,322 persons are identified to be in the age group of 12 to 25 years, which counted for 18.6% of the total population in Australia. Based on the 2009 data, there are 851,419 people in the age group of 12 to 14 years and 1,499,396 people in between the age group of 15 to 19 years. Among the 851,419 people in the age group of 12 to 14 years, 436,846 were males, and 414,573 were females, while among 1,499,396 people in between the age group of 15 to 19 years, 772,228 were males and 727,168 were females (National Youth Week, 2013). About 3.9% of the total Australian population with 4.0% males and 3.8% females are under the age group of 12 to 14 years, while 6.8% with 7.1% males and 6.6% females are under the age group of 15 to 19 years (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare 2011, 2011). Based on the Western Australian population, 21.1% were under the age group of 10 to 24 years, with 52% males and 48% females. About 32% of the total Australians were among the indigenous population in the age group of 10-24 years. About three-fifths of the indigenous youths and only one-fifth of the Western Australians lived outside the metropolitan city (Health and Wellbeing Profile of Young Western Australians, 2011). About 20% of the young people live in the northern part of the country, while similar distribution (17%-19%) of the youth population is observed in each of the three states.
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