Purpose: Health professionals continue to seek strategies to help individuals increase health-promoting behaviors and decrease those behaviors related to unhealthy lifestyles. Various health behavior theories currently guide interventions that focus on health behavior changes. Of these, a tailored approach uses individual data on beliefs and behavior to guide the content and delivery of interventions. The purpose of this paper is to explain the usefulness of theories in tailoring health promotion messages to increase health-protecting behaviors.
Overview: A brief overview of current popular theories that focus on individual behavior is presented, followed by illustrations of a tailored intervention approach for breast cancer screening. Applications of the tailored intervention approach in ongoing studies to increase breast cancer screening are described.
Clinical Implications: Clinical implications of the ongoing projects suggest practical and widespread utility of tailoring health-promoting messages to increase healthy lifestyles. The tailored approach may be used by a multidisciplinary team to focus on the individual's unique factors to impact behavior change rather than to deliver the same standard message to all individuals.