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December 16, 2013 - Weekly Roundup Archive


December 16, 2013

News Clips

  • Even Gifted Students Can’t Keep Up
    In Math and Science, the Best Fend for Themselves
    In a post-smokestack age, there is only one way for the United States to avoid a declining standard of living, and that is through innovation. Advancements in science and engineering have extended life, employed millions and accounted for more than half of American economic growth since World War II, but they are slowing. The nation has to enlarge its pool of the best and brightest science and math students and encourage them to pursue careers that will keep the country competitive.
    David Brooks, New York Times
    December 15, 2013

  • The Selling of Attention Deficit Disorder
    “The numbers make it look like an epidemic. Well, it’s not. It’s preposterous,” Dr. Conners, a psychologist and professor emeritus at Duke University, said in a subsequent interview. “This is a concoction to justify the giving out of medication at unprecedented and unjustifiable levels.”
    New York Times
    December 14, 2013

  • Predictors of substance abuse identified among teens with bipolar disorder
    A study published in the issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry found that approximately one in three teens with bipolar disorder developed substance abuse, for the first time, during 4 years of follow-up. The study also identified several risk factors that predicted who among these teens was most likely to develop substance abuse.
    The Almagest
    December 14, 2013

  • This Dangerous Illness Is Spreading in Young Men at an Alarming Rate
    These men and boys, as young as 13, are typically ashamed to talk about it, rarely get health care, and are too often shunned by their families. The AIDS epidemic in the U.S. is infecting a disproportionate number of young, poor black and Hispanic men who have sex with men. Nationally, one-quarter of new infections are among black and Hispanic men, according to a July 2012 study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
    Take Part
    December 13, 2013

  • Boys who grow up in two-parent homes less likely to have high blood pressure as adults
    In a study of African-American men, researchers from the National Institutes of Health found that boys who grew up in two-parent homes were less likely to have high blood pressure as adults compared to those raised by a single parent. Reported in the Dec. 12, 2013, issue of the journal Hypertension, this is the first study of an African-American population to document an association between childhood family living arrangements and blood pressure.
    Medical News
    December 13, 2013

  • Cell Phone Use and Grades
    Kent State University researchers surveyed more than 500 college kids about their daily cell phone habits. They were also asked about their general level of happiness, and agreed to give researchers access to their grade point averages. High use of cell phones added up to poorer grades higher anxiety, and lower satisfaction with life, compared to less cell time.
    Health Day
    December 13, 2013

  • Young Men More Likely Not To Have Health Insurance
    The U.S. Census Bureau released a report this week that shows men are less likely to have health insurance than women, and the percentage of young people who are uninsured is far greater than the national average. According to the report, 15.7 percent of Americans, or 48.6 million, in 2012 did not have health insurance. Of the total, 25.6 million were male and 23.0 million were female. The category with the highest percentage of uninsured was young men between 25 and 29 years old; at 33.9 percent, their percentage of uninsured was more than twice the national average.
    Financial Adviser
    December 12, 2013

  • New Report Details Potential Impact of Underemphasis on Adolescent Health, Possible Solutions
    According to a new report issued today by the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases (NFID) and Pfizer Inc., adolescents are often overlooked in the US healthcare system, which may lead to short- and long-term health consequences and contribute to the economic burden on the healthcare system. The report, titled The Case for Improving Adolescent Health: Helping prepare adolescents for a healthy future, suggests that an annual preventive care visit or checkup during the teen years provides an important moment and venue for proactive health guidance and intervention.
    PR Web
    December 12, 2013

  • Why You Need to Get Involved in Your Child's Digital Life
    Responsible parental screening of a child's behavior has always been a good idea. But in today's age of increasingly advanced technology, parents face unique challenges. While there certainly are advantages to instant access of virtually any kind of information, there are also formidable risks associated with our digital age that can be quite damaging to kids if parents don't exercise appropriate levels of control.
    Huffington Post
    December 11, 2013

  • Metastudy on correlations of sports participation and substance abuse
    Following a review of published studies, McMaster researchers have found that participation in sport raises the chance of adolescents and young adults abusing alcohol. However, researchers also found that while sports are associated with increased alcoholuse, they result in a decrease in illicit drug use among teens. Marijuana use was less clear—some studies showed increased use, others did not.
    Medical Express
    December 10, 2013

  • Higher Altitude May Lower Sports Concussion Risk, Study Suggests
    Review of high school athletes found 30 percent reduced rates of injury at elevations of 600 feet and up
    High school athletes who play at higher altitudes suffer fewer concussions than those closer to sea level, researchers found. One possible reason is that being at a higher altitude causes changes that make the brain fit more tightly in the skull, so it can't move around as much when a player suffers a head blow.
    Medline Pus
    December 10, 2013

  • Assault-injured youth visiting ED commonly report previous violence
    The ED visit is an opportune time to offer intervention efforts to prevent future morbidity among young patients seeking care for injuries related to violence, according to recent study findings published in Pediatrics. Previous violence, weapon experience and substance use were more common among assault-injured youth seeking ED care compared with those seeking care for other reasons.
    December 9, 2013

  • Coverage Options For Young Adults Who Have A Mental Illness
    An explanation about how the new healthcare law works
    Kaiser Family Foundation
    December 9, 2013

  • Kids Who See Movie Violence Also See Smoking, Drinking, Sex: Study
    But it's not clear what this means for young viewers.
    Violent movie characters are also likely to drink alcohol, smoke cigarettes and engage in sexual behavior in films rated appropriate for children over 12, according to a new study.
    December 9, 2013

  • FDA’s anti-smoking campaign to target teens
    Early next year, half a century after the U.S. surgeon general first proclaimed the deadly effects of smoking, the Food and Drug Administration will launch a public health campaign unlike any the federal government has ever attempted.  Slick, data-driven and well-funded, the effort could cost up to $600 million over the next five years, all of it paid for by the tobacco industry under a 2009 law.
    Washington Post
    December 9, 2013

  • Black men raised by single parent had higher blood pressure as adults
    African-American men raised in single-parent households in Washington, D.C., had higher blood pressure as adults than men raised by two parents, according to a study in the American Heart Association journal Hypertension.
    American Heart Association
    December 2, 2013

  • New Research Shows More Than Half of Teens With Mental Health Disorders Do Not Receive Treatment
    BLOG: Reclaiming Futures
    December 2, 2013
    Sexual risk lower among U.S. gay and bisexual men who accurately know their HIV status
    A new analysis of data from 20 major U.S. cities reveals continued signs of sexual risk among gay and bisexual men, but shows dramatically lower sexual risk among those who accurately know their HIV status. The findings were published today in CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
    MMWR, November 27, 2013

  • Hook-Ups, Friendships and the New Rules of ‘Dibs’ for Teen Boys
    Author Rosalind Wiseman on how high school guys can navigate the treacherous shoals of love, sex and loyalty in an era of casual relationships
    Rosalind Wiseman, author of Queen Bees and Wannabesthe 2002 book that mapped girl social hierarchies and inspired the film Mean Girls, is back with a new book. This time she’s exploring boy world. In Masterminds and Wingmen, published this fall, she offers a guide for parents hoping to help their sons navigate the shoals of adolescence. 
    Time, November 21, 2013

Recent Reports of Note

The Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) recently released three new briefs designed for community leaders, advocates, and youth organizers. The briefs are part of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s  Forward Promise initiative focused on promoting opportunities for the health and success of middle school- and high school-aged boys and young men of color.

International News


  • Free HPV vaccination for N.L. boys not in sight
    “The high uptake of the HPV vaccine among girls has protected approximately 50 per cent of the population, which significantly lowers the possibility of contracting and transmitting the virus between sexes,” said the department spokesman.
    The Telegram
    December 9,2013


  • Gay Sex Law Raises Fears
    The 153-year-old law that criminalises gay sex is likely contributing to hidden depression and possibly even substance abuse among homosexuals, mental health professionals campaigning for its repeal have said. The experts have said the Supreme Court’s ruling earlier this week re-criminalising gay sex could lead to a surge in depression levels across the community. They have cited international studies that point to higher levels of mental health problems among gay men.
    The Telegraph
    December 14, 2013

  • Indian Boys Get Lessons in Respect
    Since the brutal gang rape and death of a young woman on a bus in Delhi last December, NGOs in India have been reorienting adolescent sexuality programmes to sensitise boys on gender issues.
    Inter Press Service
    December 10, 2013


  • How genetics impact exam results and why boys need an ego boost
    This week: a university challenges students to analyse its data and more
    What has more of an impact on pupil GCSE exam results? Genetics or the school a child attends? And how much does home life come into play? These were the questions scientists at King's College London tried to answer in a study on the GCSE exam scores of more than 11,000 16-year-olds. Genetics account for more than half of variations in grades, the study found.
    The Guardian
    December 13, 2013

  • Boys 'improve in school from feeling top of class'
    A study from the London School of Economics indicates being seen as a high flyer in primary school, regardless of actual ability, can be a strong motivator for boys' performance in secondary school. Boys were "four times more affected by being top of the class than girls".
    December 9, 2013