• The PRO GREENS intervention in Finnish schoolchildren - the degree of implementation affects both mediators and the intake of fruits and vegetables.

      Lehto, Reetta; Määttä, Suvi; Lehto, Elviira; Ray, Carola; Te Velde, Saskia; Lien, Nanna; Thorsdottir, Inga; Yngve, Agneta; Roos, Eva; Folkhalsan Res Ctr, Helsinki 00250, Finland, Univ Helsinki, Dept Publ Hlth, Hjelt Inst, Helsinki, Finland, Vrije Univ Amsterdam Med Ctr, EMGO Inst Hlth & Care Res, Dept Epidemiol & Biostat, Amsterdam, Netherlands, Univ Oslo, Fac Med, Dept Nutr, Oslo, Norway, Univ Iceland, Sch Hlth Sci, Fac Food Sci & Nutr, Unit Nutr Res, Reykjavik, Iceland, Univ Orebro, Sch Hospitality Culinary Arts & Meal Sci, SE-70182 Orebro, Sweden (Cambridge Univ Press, 2014-10-14)
      Little is known about the mediating effects of the determinants of fruit and vegetable (FV) intake in school-based interventions that promote FV intake, and few studies have examined the impact of the degree of implementation on the effects of an intervention. The present study examined whether the degree of implementation of an intervention had an effect on children's fruit or vegetable intake and determined possible mediators of this effect. The study is part of the European PRO GREENS intervention study which aimed to develop effective strategies to promote consumption of fruit and vegetables in schoolchildren across Europe. Data from 727 Finnish children aged 11 years were used. The baseline study was conducted in spring 2009 and the follow-up study 12 months later. The intervention was conducted during the school year 2009-2010. The effects were examined using multilevel mediation analyses. A high degree of implementation of the intervention had an effect on children's fruit intake. Knowledge of recommendations for FV intake and liking mediated the association between a high degree of implementation of the intervention and an increase in the frequency of fruit intake. Knowledge of recommendations for FV intake and bringing fruits to school as a snack mediated the association between a low degree of implementation of the intervention and an increase in the frequency of fruit intake. Overall, the model accounted for 34 % of the variance in the change in fruit intake frequency. Knowledge of recommendations acted as a mediator between the degree of implementation of the intervention and the change in vegetable intake frequency. In conclusion, the degree of implementation had an effect on fruit intake, and thus in future intervention studies the actual degree of implementation of interventions should be assessed when considering the effects of interventions.
    • Self-assessed occupational health and working environment of female nurses, cabin crew and teachers

      Sveinsdottir, Herdis; Gunnarsdottir, Holmfridur; Fridriksdottir, Hildur (Taylor & Francis, 2007-06-01)
      AIM: The aim of this study was to describe and compare the self-assessed occupational health among female nurses, cabin crew and teachers, in relation to their working environment. Background: Similarities between the three occupations, i.e. predominantly female and service-oriented, render them interesting in comparison with respect to health and working environment. METHODS: The participants were female Icelandic cabin crew, nurses and elementary school teachers. A questionnaire including items on socio-demographics, working environment (addressing work pace, job security, monotonous work, assistance, physically strenuous work and physical environmental factors) and a symptom list was used for data collection. Factor analyses on the symptom list resulted in five symptom scales: Musculoskeletal, Stress and exhaustion, Common cold, Gastrointestinal and Sound perception scale. A total of 1571 questionnaires were distributed. The response rate was 65.7-69%, depending on occupation. Data were collected in 2002. RESULTS: Cabin crew reported worse gastrointestinal, sound perception and common cold symptoms than nurses and teachers. Cabin crew and teachers reported worse symptoms of stress and exhaustion than nurses (p < 0.05). When compared with teachers and nurses cabin crew reported less job security and more physically strenuous and monotonous work. Nurses were likelier to seek assistance from co-workers or patients as well as to take care of an older relative than teachers and cabin crew. Regression analysis found that within each occupation distress from environmental factors resulted in higher score on all the symptom scales. CONCLUSIONS: Nurses experience less stress and exhaustion than teachers and cabin crew. In comparison with one or both of the other occupations nurses are more likely to assist each other with their work, experience job security, reporting physically complex work and take care of older relatives. This should be highlighted as positive aspects of nurses' work praised as displaying responsibility and interconnectedness of nurses'.
    • The strengths and difficulties questionnaire in the Nordic countries

      Obel, Carsten; Heiervang, Einar; Rodriguez, Alina; Heyerdahl, Sonja; Smedje, Hans; Sourander, André; Gudmundsson, Olafur O; Clench-Aas, Jocelyne; Christensen, Else; Heian, Frode; et al. (Dr. Dietrich Steinkopff Verlag, 2004-06-01)
      BACKGROUND: The Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) has been translated into the different Nordic languages between 1996 and 2003. During the past few years, SDQs have been completed for nearly 100,000 children and adolescents in population-based studies as well as in clinical samples. The largest studies have been performed in Norway and Denmark, and in these countries the diagnostic interview DAWBA has also been used in conjunction with the SDQ. AIMS: In addition to a brief overview of past and ongoing SDQ work in Sweden, Finland, Norway, Denmark, and Iceland, we present scale means and standard deviations from selected community studies with comparable age groups, including parental reports for 7, 9 and 11 year-old children and self-reports of 13 and 15 year-olds. CONCLUSIONS: The descriptive statistics suggest that the distributions of SDQ scores are very similar across the Nordic countries. Further collaborative efforts in establishing norms and evaluating the validity of the SDQ as a screening instrument are encouraged.