Adolescents' disease- and fitness-related online health information seeking behaviors: The roles of perceived trust in online health information, eHealth literacy, and parental factors

Gulec H., Kvardova N., Smahel D.

Computers in Human Behavior, vol.134, 2022 (Peer-Reviewed Journal) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 134
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.chb.2022.107318
  • Journal Name: Computers in Human Behavior
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index, Scopus, Academic Search Premier, IBZ Online, Aerospace Database, Applied Science & Technology Source, CINAHL, Communication Abstracts, Computer & Applied Sciences, EBSCO Education Source, Education Abstracts, Educational research abstracts (ERA), INSPEC, Linguistics & Language Behavior Abstracts, Metadex, Psycinfo, Social services abstracts, Sociological abstracts, Civil Engineering Abstracts
  • Keywords: Online health information seeking, Trust, eHealth literacy, Parental mediation, Adolescent, WORLD-WIDE-WEB, INTERNET USE, MEDIATION, SEARCH, PERCEPTIONS


© 2022 Elsevier LtdOnline health information seeking (OHIS) behaviors are prevalent among adolescents, which might guide their behaviors in the health domain, and therefore substantially impact their overall health. This study examined adolescent and parental factors in the disease- and fitness-related OHIS behaviors of adolescents. Trust in online health information and eHealth literacy were examined as adolescent factors, whereas parental OHIS mediation and behaviors were examined as parental factors. Czech adolescents (N = 1530; 50% girls) aged 13–18 and their parents (64% women) participated in the study. The results showed that adolescents' eHealth literacy — but not their trust in online health information — was associated with OHIS behaviors. Adolescents whose parents reported a higher frequency of OHIS behaviors and who were more frequently involved in mediating their children's OHIS behaviors were more likely to seek health information online. Furthermore, parental OHIS mediation and parental fitness-related OHIS behaviors moderated the association between the perceived trust in online health information and the OHIS behaviors. The findings highlighted parents as significant role models in adolescents' OHIS behaviors.