Bullying among adolescents in a Brazilian urban center – “Health in Beagá” Study

<div><p>OBJECTIVE To analyze the prevalence of bullying and its associated factors in Brazilian adolescents.METHODS Data were used from a population-based household survey conducted by the Urban Health Observatory (OSUBH) utilizing probability sampling in three stages: census tracts, residences, and individuals. The survey included 598 adolescents (14-17 years old) who responded questions on bullying, sociodemographic characteristics, health-risk behaviors, educational well-being, family structure, physical activity, markers of nutritional habits, and subjective well-being (body image, personal satisfaction, and satisfaction with their present and future life). Univariate and multivariate analysis was done using robust Poisson regression.RESULTS The prevalence of bullying was 26.2% (28.0% among males, 24.0% among females). The location of most bullying cases was at or on route to school (70.5%), followed by on the streets (28.5%), at home (9.8%), while practicing sports (7.3%), at parties (4.6%), at work (1.7%), and at other locations (1.6%). Reports of bullying were associated with life dissatisfaction, difficulty relating to parents, involvement in fights with peers and insecurity in the neighborhood.CONCLUSIONS A high prevalence of bullying among participating adolescents was found, and the school serves as the main bullying location, although other sites such as home, parties and workplace were also reported. Characteristics regarding self-perception and adolescent perceptions of their environment were also associated with bullying, thus advancing the knowledge of this type of violence, especially in urban centers of developing countries.</p></div>