Associations between attachment representations and health behaviors in late adolescence

Elaine Scharfe, Deborah Eldredge

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

78 Scopus citations


In this study, we tested the associations among attachment ratings and health behaviors by relationship status. For individuals in relationships, attachment security was associated positively with health promotion and quality sleep and negatively with risk behaviors; fearfulness was associated positively with risk behaviors. With the exception of sleep behaviors, associations with security and fearfulness were reversed for single participants. Associations between dismissingness and quality of sleep support the proposal that individuals who deny or dismiss their attachment needs may experience physical symptoms of distress that affect their health. Future work exploring the benefits of security when coping with illness or lifestyle change is discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)295-307
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Health Psychology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • Attachment
  • Health behavior
  • Risk taking
  • Sexuality
  • Sleep behavior

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology


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