Journal of Child and Family Studies

, Volume 28, Issue 9, pp 2510–2521 | Cite as

An Examination of Bullying and Physical Health Problems in Adolescence among South Korean Youth

  • Wesley G. JenningsEmail author
  • Hyojong Song
  • Jihoon Kim
  • Danielle M. Fenimore
  • Alex R. Piquero
Original Paper


The current study provides a longitudinal examination of the relationship between bullying victimization and adolescent physical health. Relying on data from a large sample of adolescents from South Korean schools (Korean Children and Youth Panel Survey), a series of ordinary least squares regression models were estimated for adverse physical health outcomes. The results suggest that bullying victimization and perpetration is a significant risk factor for various forms of adverse physical health outcomes including asthma, rhinitis, and obesity. Specifically, being the victim of verbal bullying was associated with greater exposure to adverse health problems, including asthma, rhinitis, and obesity. We also found that being bullied physically was associated with a higher prevalence of obesity but those effects dissipated in fully controlled models. Lastly, we did observe that verbal bullying perpetration was associated with more asthma over time. Study limitations and implications for bullying prevention are also discussed.


Bullying Victimization Health South Korea Adolescence 


Author Contributions

W. J.: designed and executed the study, assisted with the data analyses, and contributed to all sections of the paper. H. S.: collaborated with the design and data analysis plan and drafted the results section. J. K.: analyzed the data and drafted the methods section. D. F.: collaborated and drafted the literature review. A. P.: collaborated and drafted the discussion section in addition to reviewing and editing the final manuscript.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wesley G. Jennings
    • 1
    Email author
  • Hyojong Song
    • 2
  • Jihoon Kim
    • 3
  • Danielle M. Fenimore
    • 1
  • Alex R. Piquero
    • 4
  1. 1.School of Criminal JusticeTexas State UniversitySan MarcosUSA
  2. 2.University of Texas Rio Grande ValleyBrownsvilleUSA
  3. 3.University of FloridaGainesvilleUSA
  4. 4.University of Texas at DallasDallasUSA

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