Are Digital Health Interventions That Target Lifestyle Risk Behaviors Effective for Improving Mental Health and Wellbeing in Adolescents? A Systematic Review with Meta-analyses

Rebecca Raeside*, Si Si Jia, Allyson Todd, Karice Hyun, Anna Singleton, Lauren A. Gardner, Katrina E. Champion, Julie Redfern, Stephanie R. Partridge

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleResearchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
5 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Research has established associations between poor mental health and lifestyle risk behaviors among adolescents, yet gaps exist in understanding whether digital health interventions for adolescents targeting these behaviors will improve mental health and wellbeing. This study aimed to evaluate how effective digital health interventions targeting lifestyle risk behaviors are in improving mental health/wellbeing among adolescents (10–24 years old). We also aimed to understand how effects vary by participant and intervention characteristics, and intervention adherence and engagement. Through systematic review with meta-analysis, 5229 records were identified. 17 studies were included representing 9070 participants (15.3 mean age, 1.2 SD). Interventions had small but statistically non-significant positive effects on physical and psychosocial quality of life, depressive symptoms and anxiety at follow-up compared to usual care controls. Digital health delivery methods included text messaging, mobile applications, websites and email, or a combination of these. Intervention adherence, engagement and satisfaction were measured poorly across studies. Despite small changes, potential exists for digital health interventions to improve mental health or wellbeing outcomes among adolescents due to the shared nature of risk and protective factors for mental health and chronic diseases.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-226
Number of pages34
JournalAdolescent Research Review
Volume9
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2024
Externally publishedYes

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