Canadian Journal of Public Health

, Volume 99, Issue 2, pp 125–129 | Cite as

A Systematic Review of Depressed Mood and Anxiety by SES in Youth Aged 10–15 Years

  • Mark LemstraEmail author
  • Cory Neudorf
  • Carl D’Arcy
  • Anton Kunst
  • Lynne M. Warren
  • Norman R. Bennett



A majority of population-based studies suggest prevalence of depressed mood and anxiety is most common during late adolescence to early adulthood. Mental health status has been linked previously to socio-economic status in adults. The purpose of this systematic literature review is to clarify if socio-economic status (SES) is a risk indicator of depressed mood or anxiety in youth between the ages of 10 to 15 years old.


We performed a systematic literature review to identify published or unpublished papers between January 1, 1 980 and October 31, 2006 that reviewed depressed mood or anxiety by SES in youth aged 10–15 years.


We found nine studies that fulfilled our inclusion criteria and passed the methodological quality review. The prevalence of depressed mood or anxiety was 2.49 times higher (95% CI 2.33–2.67) in youth with low SES in comparison to youth with higher SES.


The evidence suggests that low SES has an inverse association with the prevalence of depressed mood and anxiety in youth between the ages of 10 to 15 years old. Higher rates of depressed mood and anxiety among lower socio-economic status youth may impact emotional development and limit future educational and occupational achievement.


Lower socio-economic status is associated with higher rates of depressed mood and anxiety in youth.

Key words

Depressive disorder anxiety disorders mental health socioeconomic factors youth 



Selon la majorité des études représentatives sur le sujet, la prévalence de l’humeur dépressive et de l’anxiété est plus courante entre la fin de l’adolescence et le début de l’âge adulte. L’état de santé mentale a déjà été lié au statut socioéconomique (SSE) chez les adultes. Au moyen d’une enquête bibliographique systématique, nous avons voulu déterminer si le SSE est aussi un indicateur du risque d’humeur dépressive ou d’anxiété chez les jeunes de 10 à 15 ans.


À l’aide d’une enquête bibliographique systématique, nous avons répertorié les études publiées ou inédites menées entre le 1er janvier 1 980 et le 31 octobre 2006 portant sur l’humeur dépressive ou l’anxiété selon le SSE chez les jeunes de 1 0 à 1 5 ans.


Neuf études correspondaient à nos critères d’inclusion et de qualité méthodologique. La prévalence de l’humeur dépressive ou de l’anxiété était 2,49 fois supérieure (IC de 95 % = 2,33–2,67) chez les jeunes ayant un faible SSE que chez les jeunes ayant un SSE élevé.


Ces données laissent croire que le faible SSE est inversement proportionnel à la prévalence de l’humeur dépressive et de l’anxiété chez les jeunes de 1 0 à 1 5 ans. Les taux plus élevés d’humeur dépressive et d’anxiété chez les jeunes au statut socioéconomique faible pourraient se répercuter sur leur développement affectif et limiter leurs résultats scolaires et professionnels futurs.


Un faible statut socioéconomique est associé à des taux élevés d’humeur dépressive et d’anxiété chez les jeunes.

Mots clés

trouble dépressif trouble anxieux santé mentale facteurs socioéconomiques jeunes 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Buka SL, Monuteaux M, Earlsi F. The epidemiology of child and adolescent mental disorders. In: Tsuang MT, Tohen M (Eds.), Textbook in Psychiatric Epidemiology, Second Edition. New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons Inc., 2002.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Mental Health: A report of the surgeon general: Executive summary. Rockville, MD: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Mental Health Services, National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Mental Health, 1999.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Statistics Canada. National longitudinal survey of children and youth. Ottawa, ON: Human Resources Development Canada and Statistics, 2003.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Wight RG, Sepulveda JE, Aneshensel CS. Depressive symptoms: How do adolescents compare with adults? J Adolesc Health 2004;34(4):314–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Parker G, Roy K. Adolescent depression — A review. Aust N Z J Psychiatry 2001;35:572–80.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Merikangas KR, Avenevoli S. Epidemiology of mood and anxiety disorders in children and adolescents. In: Tsuang MT, Tohen M (Eds.). Textbook in Psychiatric Epidemiology, Second Edition. New York: John Wiley & Sons Inc., 2002.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Peterson AC, Compas BE, Brooks-Gunn J. Depression in adolescence: Current knowledge, research directions, and implications for programs and policy. Washington, DC: Carnegie Council on Adolescent Development, 1992.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Mirza KA, Michael A. Major depression in children and adolescents. Br J Hosp Med 1996;1–2:57–61.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Hauenstein EJ. Depression in adolescence. J Obstet Gynecol Neonatal Nurs 2003;32(2):239–48.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Walter G. Depression in adolescence. Aust Earn Phys 1996;25(10):1575–82.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Fleming JE, Offord DR. Epidemiology of childhood depressive disorders: A critical review. J Am Acad Adolesc Psychiatry 1990;29(4):571–80.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Boyle MH, Offord DR, Hofmann HG, Catlin GP, Byles JA, Cadman T, et al. Ontario child health study I. Arch Gen Psychiatry 1987;44:826–31.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Stavrakaki C, Gaudet M. Epidemiology of affective and anxiety disorders in children and adolescents. Psychiatr Clin North Am 1989;12(4):791–802.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Kessler RC, Zhao S. Overview of descriptive epidemiology of mental disorders. In: Aneshensel CS, Phelan J (Eds.), Handbook of the Sociology of Mental Health. New York: Plenum, 1999.Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Petersen AC, Compas BE, Brooks-Gunn M, Ey S, Grant KE. Depression in adolescence. Am Psychol 1993;48:155–68.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Lewinsohn PM, Rhode P, Klein P, Seely JR. Natural course of adolescent major depressive disorder: Continuity into young adulthood. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry 1999;38:56–63.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Pine DS, Cohen E, Cohen P, Brook J. Adolescent depressive symptoms as predictors of adult depression: Moodiness or mood disorder? Am J Psychiatry 1999;156:133–35.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Rutter M. The developmental psychopathology of depression: Issues and perspectives. In: Rutter M, Izard CE, Read PB (Eds.), Depression in Young People: Developmental and Clinical Perspectives. New York: Guilford, 1986.Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Jaffe SR, Moffit TE, Caspi A, Fombonne E, Poulton R, Martin J. Differences in early childhood risk factors for juvenile-onset and adult onset depression. Arch Gen Psychiatry 2002;58:215–22.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Pine DS, Cohen P, Johnson JG, Brook JS. Adolescent life events as predictors of adult depression. J Affect Disord 2002;68:49–57.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Health and Welfare Canada. Mental Health for Canadians: Striking a Balance. Ottawa: Ministry of Supply and Services Canada, 1988.Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Cote P, Cassidy JD, Caroll L, Frank JW, Bombardier C. A systematic review of the prognosis of acute whiplash and a new conceptual framework to synthesize the literature. Spine 2006;26(19):E445–E458.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Fleiss JL. The statistical basis of meta-analysis. Stat Methods Med Res 1993;2:121–45.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Cappuccio FP, Elliot P, Allender PS, Pryer J, Follman DA, Cutler JA. Epidemiologic association between dietary calcium intake and blood pressure: A meta-analysis of published data. Am J Epidemiol 1995;142(9):935–41.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Bergeron L, Valla J-P, Breton J-J, Gaudet N, Berthiaume C, Lambert J, et al. Correlates of mental disorders in the Quebec general population of 6 to 14-year olds. J Abnorm Child Psychol 2000;28(1):47.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Statistics Canada. Psychological health–depression. Ottawa, Ontario: Health Reports Winter 1999;11(3).Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Goodman E, Slap GB, Huang B. The public health impact of socioeconomic status on adolescent depression and obesity. Am J Public Health 2003;93(13):1844–50.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Roberts RE, Roberts CR, Chen YR. Ethno cultural differences in prevalence of adolescent depression. Am J Community Pyschol 1997;25(1):95–110.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Hammack PL, Robinson WL, Crawford I, Li ST. Poverty and depressed mood among urban African-American adolescents: A family stress perspective. J Child and Family Studies 2004;13(3):309–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. 30.
    Kubic MY, Lytle LA, Birnbaum AS, Murry DM, Perry CL. Prevalence and correlates of depressive symptoms in young adolescents. Am J Health Behav 2003;27(5):546–53.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    Costello JE, Angold A, Burns BJ, Stangl DK, Tweed DL, Erkanli A, Worthman CM. The Great Smoky Mountains study of youth: Goals, design, methods, and the prevalence of DSM-III-R disorders. Arch Gen Psychiatry 1996;53(12):1129–136.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    Undheim AM, Sund AM. School factors and the emergence of depressive symptoms among young Norwegian adolescents. Eur Child Adolesc Psychiatry 2005;14:446–53.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    Canada, The Senate. Kirby MJL, Keon WJ. Out of the shadows at last: Transforming mental health, Mental Illness and Addiction Services in Canada. Final Report of the Standing Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology, May 2006.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Canadian Public Health Association 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mark Lemstra
    • 1
    Email author
  • Cory Neudorf
    • 1
  • Carl D’Arcy
    • 2
  • Anton Kunst
    • 3
  • Lynne M. Warren
    • 1
  • Norman R. Bennett
    • 1
  1. 1.Saskatoon Health RegionSaskatoonCanada
  2. 2.University of SaskatchewanSaskatoonCanada
  3. 3.Erasmus UniversityRotterdamNetherlands

Personalised recommendations