12/9/16: 3 Articles You Need To Read This Week

We know you're busy--that's why we're keeping up on the news for you. Here are some of the latest articles about teen health that are worth your time. Check back every Friday for more headlines you may have missed!


1. Social media sites are places where teens feel safe

Apps and sites like Instagram, YouNow, and WattPad, aren't just entertainment and time-wasters for teens. These apps provide a place for connection and solace--a place where Gen Z teens can be open about their feelings and struggles. For example, Justin uses YouNow to document his life as a trans teen, Ajala uses the Instagram hashtag #PerfectlyMe to support body positivity, and Rachel's YouTube cooking channel has boosted her self-confidence. 
2. Across America, math skills are lagging far behind those of other countries

When it comes to math, American high schools are "losing ground," compared to the rest of the world, Education Secretary John B. King Jr. says. More than half a million 15-year-old students from over 70 nations took part in the International Student Assessment, a test on an 1,000-point scale. The average U.S. math score was 470--20 points below the world average of 490. The U.S. scores in reading and science were fairly unimpressive as well, ranking right at average. 


3. From 2011-2015, e-cigarette use by teens has increased 900%

A new report from the Surgeon General warns that in 2015, 60 percent of teens were vapers. Experts suggest that they likely became interested in smoking because of the interesting flavors. Though vaping is harmful to everyone, it is especially dangerous to teens, because they are in a crucial developmental stage.

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