Blog: Teen Health -- Opportunities To Create Life-Long Habits

Jan 18, 2016, 08:05 ET from Pennsylvania Medical Society

HARRISBURG, Pa., Jan. 18, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Teen years are a time of rapid physical and emotional growth. Health behavior patterns established during adolescence both affect the individual's current and future health, and have the potential to lay the foundation, either positively or negatively, for adult health. Thus it stands to reason that promoting healthy behavior in teens promotes a healthy population in general.

More than 7 percent of people in Pennsylvania (or 1.7 million) are adolescents between the ages of 10 and 19. Fewer than half of Pennsylvania high school students report getting the recommended amount of daily physical activity, 20 percent had at least one chronic health condition, and 13 percent report seriously considering a suicide attempt.

Encouraging teens to question, learn, and engage with accurate health information helps adolescents develop the necessary skills to advocate for their own health. Pennsylvania Teen Health Week has been established to help teens build these skills in collaboration with the College of Physicians of Philadelphia and the Pennsylvania Department of Health, and with the support of the Pennsylvania Medical Society.

Currently my main professional area of interest is reaching teens with accurate health information online. Nearly 100 percent of teens go to the Internet with health questions of some sort, and by the age of 16, more teens go online in search of health information than to the adults in their lives.


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SOURCE Pennsylvania Medical Society