The relationship between parental involvement and adolescent mental health in six sub-Saharan African countries : findings from Global School-based Health Surveys (GSHS)

Gizem Arat, Paul W.C. Wong*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)

5 Citations (Scopus)


Sub-Saharan African (SSA) youth have higher rates of poor mental health compared to their counterparts in other low-and-middle-income countries. Empirical studies have found that family support is a crucial deterrent against the development of mental health problems in adolescence. However, little is known about the link between parental involvement and SSA young people mental health. This study examined the correlation between parental involvement and SSA adolescent mental health. About 15,000 adolescents aged 11–17 from six SSA countries participated in the Global School-Based Health Surveys (2003–2007). Based on the findings, low parental involvement was observed. Binomial regression analysis showed that the strength and direction of the relationship between parental involvement and mental health varied across countries. These findings may indicate the need for more intense mental health intervention efforts including the collaboration of professionals, policy-makers, and parents to guide future child and adolescent mental health services.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)144-157
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Mental Health Promotion
Issue number3
Early online date13 Jun 2016
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes



  • Adolescents
  • mental health
  • parental involvement
  • sub-Saharan African countries

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