2/24/17: 4 Articles You Need to Read This Week

We know you must be 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. Teachers are stepping up to fight fake news

A recent Stanford study determined that students at all grade levels are having trouble determining what's fake and what's real when it comes to news. Because of this, teachers have come up with creative ways to help students learn how to distil the truth. One ninth-grade teacher uses pamphlets from the French Revolutionary period to help her teens understand that fake news isn't new. A high-school teacher in California knows that it's even harder for his English-language learners to distinguish real news from fake, so he has his students diagram news articles, pointing out the lede and identifying quotations. He says media literacy is the key to overcoming this threat. Be sure to keep an eye out for our own upcoming fake news story in May!


2. Teens who are sleepy at lunch are more likely to be criminals as adults

In a study by the University of Pennsylvania and the University of York, researchers found that teen boys who reported daytime drowsiness were 4.5 times more likely to participate in a violent crime over the next decade and a half. Those who reported drowsiness at age 14 and crime at age 29 had also reported anti-social behavior as teens. So it seems that daytime drowsiness, coupled with anti-social behavior in teen boys, can be a predictor of violent-crime participation in adulthood. 


3. At home, parents aren't keeping opioids away from teens

According to a study published in the journal Pediatrics, parents aren't properly storing and disposing of opioids, leaving them up for grabs for kids and teens. Out of the 681 parents of teens who were surveyed, researchers found that almost 70 percent improperly stored prescription painkillers. Experts say this usually happens because parents trust their teens not to misuse pills, but it can actually be an easy way for teens to experiment. 


4. Study says teens who are high achievers are more likely to smoke marijuana and drink alcohol

Academically-gifted students in their late teens are more likely than their peers to smoke marijuana and drink alcohol, according to a new study. In fact, smart teens were almost 50 percent more likely to occasionally smoke marijuana and were twice as likely to drink alcohol regularly. The researchers presume this could be linked to more open-mindedness in higher-achieving students or the fact that high achieving students often come from wealthier backgrounds.


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