Fifteen-year-old Sydney Raley from Eden Prairie, Minnesota, was working her shift at a McDonald’s drive-through when she realized that one of her customers was choking. Raley had taken first aid training through the Red Cross and knew she needed to act fast. “I jumped out the window of the drive-through and I got her out of the car and I told her daughter to call 911,” Raley said. “I started doing the Heimlich maneuver, but I’m not really strong so it didn’t work the first couple times.” Raley called over a bystander, who helped her successfully dislodge food from the customer’s throat. Learning basic first aid techniques can help you cope with an emergency or get help faster. If you’re interested, ask a teacher or librarian for more information, or search online for Red Cross–sponsored first aid training in your community.
Seventeen-year-old Emily Meister from Wichita, Kansas, has been living with multiple heart conditions since elementary school. In fourth grade, she wore a bulky heart monitor that was physically uncomfortable and often made her feel self-conscious. When her sister began working with the American Heart Association (AHA), Meister realized there was a way for her to make a difference. Today, she works with the AHA to advocate for heart health and help other teens learn how to stay healthy. “I could not do what I’ve done today without them (the AHA) and the ladies that work with me,” she said. “They have also helped connect me with other people like me. Once you have that community you know there are others like yourself.” Meister hopes to go to college to become a pediatric cardiologist.
The school closures in spring 2020 had a negative effect on the health and well-being of many young people. But homeschooling also had a positive flipside: Thanks to sleeping longer in the morning, many teenagers reported improved health and health-related quality of life. The study authors therefore believe school days should begin later in the morning.
Many people celebrate the start of a new year by identifying goals they would like accomplish or things they would like to change. Experts say you’re more likely to achieve your goals if you follow the SMART acronym: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-based. Studies also show that writing down your goals can help you stay focused on what you want to achieve.
Last week, powerful tornadoes devastated communities in Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Ohio, and Tennessee. At least ninety people are feared dead, and rescuers are searching for survivors. Disasters can happen anywhere, at any time of day or night. It’s important to listen to updates and instructions from local authorities about how to respond to emergencies in your area. You should also have supplies in case you need stay indoors for a while, such as a flashlight or lantern, extra batteries, a first aid kit, food that won’t spoil, water, and a battery-powered or hand crank radio.
The Riverside Cubs, the football team for the California School for the Deaf, Riverside (CSDR), recently competed in their first-ever state championship. It was also the first championship game for CSDR in its 68-year history as a school. All the Cubs players and coaches are completely deaf and play against hearing teams. They communicate with each other using American Sign Language, hand signals, and enhanced visual abilities. With each win, more people learned about the Cubs’ hard work and determination. Unfortunately, the Cubs lost their final game, but they say this season was a victory for CSDR and the deaf community worldwide. Junior tight end and defensive lineman Christian Jimenez told CBS Los Angeles, “I just appreciate all of your support, thank you for believing in us. We hope you realize that we can play, as deaf people we can do anything except hear. Keep an open mind. Don’t look at us as disabled people. We can play football... we can play the game.”
Researchers have found that the link between smoking at the start of pregnancy and having a smaller baby may extend to future pregnancies.
Many people felt sad or worried during the pandemic, but teens were particularly impacted. Feeling down from time to time is normal, but when your feelings interfere with your ability to sleep, study, eat, and enjoy life, you may be depressed. No matter how alone you feel, there’s always someone you can talk to.
The Signal for Help was launched by the Canadian Women’s Foundation and became well known during the COVID-19 lockdowns. The signal, which is performed by holding one hand up with the thumb tucked into the palm, then folding the four other fingers down over the thumb, spread quickly across social media platforms. Many social media users filmed themselves demonstrating the signal, which indicates that someone is experiencing violence at home, in an unsafe situation, or in an abusive relationship. Recently, officials in Kentucky reported that they had rescued a missing underage girl from the car of a 61-year-old man after another driver saw her making the help signal and called 911. Police told media outlets that the girl had learned the hand gesture on TikTok.
While world leaders participated in the United Nations climate conference COP26 in Glasgow, Scotland, thousands of teen activists marched through the streets. The activists marched holding signs with messages reflecting their frustration with global climate negotiations. The talks in Glasgow aim to secure national promises to cut greenhouse gas emissions, however, many teen activists feel the commitments made so far are underwhelming.
The U.N. is asking countries to halve their emissions from 1990 levels by 2030, on their way to net-zero emissions by 2050, meaning the world would release no more climate-warming gases than the amount it is simultaneously recapturing from the atmosphere. So far, the summit has made deals to try to phase out coal over the next three decades, but this is without the world’s biggest consumer, China. Some countries have also pledged to reduce deforestation and curb methane.
A new study of nearly 250,000 children in Ontario over seven years found a mother's weight before pregnancy may impact their newborn's risk of developing allergic diseases in early childhood, whereas weight gain during pregnancy did not seem to have the same effect.
A new report published in JAMA Pediatrics found that teen vaping of marijuana in North America doubled between 2013 and 2020. This indicates that teens may be trading joints, pipes, or bongs for vape pens. Researchers believe the increase may be due to the more intense high that can be achieved by cannabis oils, which contain higher levels of THC, and the misconception that vaping devices are safer than smoking.
Experts note that research shows that vaping marijuana appears worse for teens than vaping nicotine products. A separate survey by Monitoring the Future found that “teens’ lifetime cannabis vaping” use was associated with several adverse respiratory symptoms. Researchers advocate for greater investment in intervention and prevention measures, including better regulation of cannabis vaping products and bans on advertising that target young people.
Shootings involving teens have been on the rise in recent years. Experts say idleness caused by the COVID-19 pandemic shares the blame with easy access to guns and disputes that can end with gunfire. The U.S. had 991 deaths among people 17 or younger in 2019 related to gun violence, according to the website Gun Violence Archive. That number spiked to 1,375 in 2020 and 2021 is on pace to be worse. The archive tracks shootings from more than 7,500 law enforcement, media, government, and commercial sources.
Studies have shown that victims of violence are at an elevated risk of becoming violent themselves. Multiple hospitals and organizations are forming programs to help. One example is St. Louis Children’s Hospital, which created its Victims of Violence program that seeks to reduce this by pairing surviving shooting victims with mentors and offering counseling, mediation, and a link to social service agencies.
Lyric Enger is a 13-year old with a passion for multiple hobbies — such as science, robotics class, and various sporting activities. She’s a member of her school’s track team and enjoys skateboarding. However, she can be sidelined from some of her favorite activities when she’s having a severe asthma attack.
Enger suffers from exercise-induced asthma, which has caused her to be hospitalized multiple times throughout her life. Now she is participating in a new study to help her manage asthma symptoms and maybe, one day, help future generations of asthmatic teens prevent attacks like the ones she has experienced growing up. For the study, she carries a rescue inhaler, uses devices to clear her respiratory system, wears a mask on smoky days, and uses an app to monitor her daily meds and the air quality. Enger hope her participation will help other teens with asthma live a happier and normal life.
Adolescents who had received a mental health disorder diagnosis were often excluded from the labor market and education as young adults. This particularly applied to adolescents who had been diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder or psychosis. The results were found out in a birth cohort study of people born in Finland in 1987.
A new report found that teen vaping plummeted as many U.S. students were forced to learn from home during the pandemic. While the study is still being interpreted, experts claimed the large decrease in e-cigarette use is likely real and makes sense since young people often vape socially.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that only 11 percent of high school students and less than 3 percent of middle school students said they used vaping products recently. That is about a 40 percent drop from last year. If true, it would be the second big drop in a row, from a peak of 28 percent of high schoolers using vape products in 2019.