Objective: To assess whether having a commonly identified risk factor for certain chronic diseases or accidents predicted higher perceptions of risk for those health problems. Methods: Survey data from 618 adults in a southeastern metropolitan area were used. Health status and socio-demographic measures were identified as risk factors and examined as predictors of risk perceptions. Results: Older, less healthy adults saw themselves at greater risk for cancer and heart disease. Younger men did not see themselves at greater risk for traffic accidents. Selected risk factors for heart disease and cancer were more important in predicting risk perceptions for those diseases than selected risk factors for traffic-related injury. Conclusions: Individuals are less aware of their traffic-accident risk factors and more aware of their chronic-disease risk factors.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health(social science)
- Social Psychology
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health