January 12, 2011
The relationship between an adolescent's home environment and his/her likelihood of engaging in sexual risk behavior was the focus of the current study. Among a nationally representative sample of Canadian youths ages 15 to 19, the authors examined household-level correlates of condom use at last intercourse.
Logistic regression analyses were applied to data from the 2005 Canadian Community Health Survey to determine whether characteristics of the home environment were associated with self-reports of condom use during most recent intercourse.
Included in the analysis were 3,974 sexually active adolescents; 74.8 percent reported condom use at last intercourse.
After adjusting for household education and income, the researchers found that teens living in larger dwellings were less likely to report not using condoms. Those whose households included greater numbers of individuals were more likely to report not using condoms. Older age, female gender, use of alternative contraception, and "having a weak sense of community belonging" also were identified as significant correlates of not using condoms.
"Our results demonstrate that factors related to the household environment are independently associated with condom use among adolescents," the authors concluded. "Policies and programs that aim to promote condom use should seek to address issues such as privacy, which may limit adolescents' ability to engage in safer sexual practices."
11.2010; Vol. 7; No. 4: P. 441-447; Brandon D.L. Marshall, Mieke Koehoorn, Jean A. Shoveller
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