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Author: Friedman, Abigail Sarah
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1. Friedman, Abigail Sarah
Essays in Health Economics: Understanding Risky Health Behaviors
Ph.D. Dissertation, Department of Health Policy, Harvard University, 2014
Cohort(s): Children of the NLSY79, NLSY79 Young Adult
Publisher: ProQuest Dissertations & Theses (PQDT)
Keyword(s): Bullying/Victimization; Child Self-Administered Supplement (CSAS); Cigarette Use (see Smoking); Crime; Drug Use; Exercise; Neighborhood Effects; Parent Supervision/Monitoring; Peers/Peer influence/Peer relations; Substance Use; Trauma/Death in family

Permission to reprint the abstract has not been received from the publisher.

This dissertation presents three papers applying health economics to the study of risky behaviors. The first uses data from the 1979 National Longitudinal Survey of Youth to examine the relationship between adverse events and risky behaviors among adolescents. Substance use responses to experiencing either of two adverse events--violent crime victimization or death of a non-family member one felt close to--explain 6.7 percent of first cigarette use, and 14.3 percent of first use of illegal drugs other than marijuana. Analyses of exercise, a positive coping mechanism, find shock-responses consistent with a coping-response, but not with rational, time-inconsistent, or non-rational drivers considered here. I conclude that distressing events lead to risky behaviors, with a coping response contributing to this effect.
Bibliography Citation
Friedman, Abigail Sarah. Essays in Health Economics: Understanding Risky Health Behaviors. Ph.D. Dissertation, Department of Health Policy, Harvard University, 2014.