RAND research on the physical and mental health of adolescents examines such topics as teenage pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), substance use, obesity and physical activity, depression and suicide, and the influence of the media on sexual behavior.
Adolescent depression is common, disabling, and is associated with academic, social, behavioral, and health consequences. Teens with depression were significantly more likely to perceive barriers to care compared with nondepressed teens. Parents were less likely to report barriers than their teens; perceived stigma and concern about family member response were among the significant teen barriers. Teen perceived barriers scores were negatively associated with any use of antidepressants, use of antidepressants for at least 1 month and any psychotherapy or antidepressant use at 6 months.
Interventions that limit teenagers' exposure to televised sexual content, that provide a more accurate portrayal of sexuality than typically depicted on television or that help adolescents think critically about televised sexual content may help teenagers make more carefully considered decisions about sexual debut.
This study used latent growth mixture modeling to identify discrete developmental patterns of heavy drinking, perceived parental disapproval of substance use, and association with peers who drink from early to late adolescence among a sample of 5,591 youth.
To establish the prevalence of recanting of life-time inhalant use, the authors identify correlates of recanting to gain insight to its causes and develop a method for distinguishing recanters who truly are versus are not life-time users of inhalants.
Quality improvement programs for depressed youths in primary care settings have been shown to improve 6-month clinical outcomes, but longer-term outcomes are unknown.
Hispanic youth are likely to attend schools surrounded by convenience stores, restaurants, or off-licenses. Middle schools have fewer surrounding businesses than high schools, and larger schools have fewer surrounding businesses than smaller schools.
Adolescents who made pledges to remain virgins until they are married were less likely to be sexually active over the three-year study period than other youth who were similar to them, but who did not make a virginity pledge
Latent growth mixture modeling was used to identify discrete patterns of physical aggression from Grades 7 to 11 among a sample of 1,877 youth.
Over the past two decades, studies have provided evidence for the strong link between substance use (SU) and delinquency among adolescents.
Adolescents whose sexual communication with their parents involved more repetition felt closer to their parents, felt more able to communicate with their parents in general and about sex, and perceived that discussions had greater openness.
Insurance gaps and delayed care are prevalent for low-income young adults who aged out of a public program for children with special health care needs, despite ongoing health problems. Greater transition support might improve access.
Identifies Spanish language-sensitive attributes associated with substance use in Latino adolescents. Protective attributes included parental monitoring, more extended family members in the network, and less substance use among network members.
Finds risk and protective factors during adolescence that predict future regular smoking and multiple problem behavior among youth who had tried smoking by grade 7. Protective factors include good grades and parental disapproval of smoking/drug use.
Data from a national survey of teens were used to assess whether exposure to televised sexual content predicted subsequent pregnancy for girls or responsibility for pregnancy for boys. Exposure to televised sexual content predicted teen pregnancy.
This book chapter explores approaches to examining connections between media content and behavior, using a RAND study of media effects on adolescent teen sexual behavior as an example.
Problematic substance use, failure to assume adult roles and responsibilities, and exposure to pro-drug social influences in adolescence may be linked to later substance use.
Parents play an important role in the sexual health of their adolescent children. Talking Parents, Healthy Teens is an intervention designed to help parents improve communication with their adolescent children, promote healthy adolescent sexual development, and reduce adolescent sexual risk behaviors.
The findings suggest that commercial PA facilities are important contributors to the accumulation of PA among adolescent girls.
Due to the association between body mass index and locked schools, efforts to stem the obesity epidemic should include making schools more accessible
Examines possible parallel pathways between social support (from parents, peers and schools) and depression in females and delinquency in males.