Background: Peer education is one of the most effective strategies for changing behavior in adolescents, which provides the unique learning opportunities for promote health behaviors. The aim of this study was to systematically review the effect of peer education on health promotion of Iranian adolescents.
Materials and Methods: In this systematic review, all interventional studies were searched from Web of Science, Scopus, Embase, Cochrane, Medline (via PubMed) as English databases and SID, Magiran and Irondoc as Persian databases using keywords such as "adolescent, teenager, student, peer group, education, health and Iran" between January 2000 to October 2018. Two reviewer studied the full text of the articles and their main findings were extracted and categorized. The quality of the articles were checked and verified using the Effective Public Health Practice Project (EPHPP) tool.
Results: Finally, 20 articles (with total 6,652 adolescents) which met inclusion criteria were investigated and reviewed systemically in four categories including the effect of peer education on prevention of diseases, mental health, nutritional behaviors, and prevention of high-risk behaviors in adolescents. In all categories, the results showed the equal or greater effect of peer education on knowledge, attitude, practice, self-efficacy and health behavior of adolescents compared to other methods such as education by teacher, health personnel, lecture, pamphlet and booklet. Only effect of education by the physician was more than peer education.
Conclusion: According to the results, peer education improves the knowledge, attitude, health behavior, and self-efficacy of adolescents and as a result, it will promote the adolescent health.