Native American Issues

Monitoring Self-Esteem of Native Teens is Important

September 9, 2011

This week, the Native News Network writes an interesting article that highlights the important role that healthy self-esteem plays in the lives of Native youth. The story includes findings from a study released by Northwestern University that analyzed health and wellness data from more than 10,000 young people who were followed for six years. The study’s findings reinforce what many social workers and families already know:

  • Positive well-being is associated with fewer risky health behaviors like smoking and physical inactivity; and

  • Positive well-being for teens is associated with better perceived health during young adulthood.

To support this study, the Center’s director, Erin Bailey says, “Self –esteem and confidence are critical components of health and wellness for teens. Native American youth face some of the most significant disparities in the United States and thus strong self-esteem is critical for development.”   

Click here to read the full story and find out how a tribal social worker answers the question, “How do we change what is happening to our tribal youth?”