Behavioral Health: Focus on Preventive Child Health Behavior

  • Bryan D. Carter
  • Debra Bendell
  • Joseph Matarazzo


In the past several decades, and within this century in particular, there has been a major shift in the nature of the ills which threaten man’s quality of life and longevity. Whereas previously the major health challenge which confronted mankind involved survival amidst a host of environmental pathogens (predators, infectious diseases, starvation), the major sources of morbidity and mortality among modern humans are those in which our own behavior and lifestyle are the major contributors (Califano, 1979; Matarazzo, 1983). In order of their contribution to the mortality rates of all American citizens, the major killers of today are heart disease (37.8% of all deaths), cancer (20.4%), and stroke (9.6%), as shown in Figure 1. Figure 2 gives the comparable mortality figures for children in the 1–4 and 5–14 year age groups.


Health Behavior Behavioral Health Stressful Life Event Behavioral Medicine Motor Vehicle Accident 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bryan D. Carter
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Debra Bendell
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Joseph Matarazzo
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Wright Patterson USAF Medical CenterUSA
  2. 2.University of Oklahoma Health Sciences CenterUSA
  3. 3.University of Oregon Health Sciences CenterUSA

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