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Association Between School Bullying, Suicidal Ideation, and Eating Disorders Among School-Aged Children from Antioquia, Colombia

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Abstract

Evidence has suggested that various mental health problems are associated with school bullying. The present study investigated the associations between bullying and suicidal ideation and eating disorders in school-aged children. A cross-sectional study was conducted with 3222 adolescents from grades 5 to 9 enrolled in public schools in the urban area of the Department of Antioquia (Colombia), selected through multi-stage sampling. The prevalence of suicidal ideation was 38% (95% CI: 35.8–39.4), and the prevalence of eating disorders was 18% (95% CI: 16.2–18.9). Adolescents exposed to medium–high levels of school bullying had a significantly higher risk of suicidal ideation (PR = 1.38). Also, the greater the family dysfunction, the significantly higher risk of suicidal ideation. Regarding eating disorders, adolescents with medium–high exposure to bullying showed a greater risk of eating disorders (PR = 3.86). Neither suicidal ideation nor eating disorders were associated with sex and age of the adolescents. This study concludes that school bullying could potentially affect mental health outcomes in school-aged children while describing the relevance of family functionality.

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Data Availability

The data that support the findings of this study are available from the corresponding author, upon reasonable request.

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Funding

This study was financially supported by Universidad CES, Medellín, Colombia, and Corporación Universitaria Lasallista.

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Correspondence to Jessica Quintero-Jurado.

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Ethics Approval

This research was approved by the Ethics Committee of the CES University (Medellin, Colombia), act number 54 of 2012.

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School principals, parents, and all the adolescents that were chosen were asked to sign the informed consent.

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The authors declare no competing interests..

Additional information

The original online version of this article was revised: This article was originally published with the wrong affiliation of the third author, Dr. Beatriz Caicedo-Velasquez, so it was updated to correct the author’s affiliation

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Quintero-Jurado, J., Moratto-Vásquez, N., Caicedo-Velasquez, B. et al. Association Between School Bullying, Suicidal Ideation, and Eating Disorders Among School-Aged Children from Antioquia, Colombia. Trends in Psychol. 30, 58–72 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1007/s43076-021-00101-2

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