Now, in an unfolding tragedy reaching into communities across the country, more teenagers are foundering on those shoals and taking their own lives. According to an August report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CDC , the number of girls age 15 to 19 committing suicide doubled from to , to a year high of 5. The most recent statistics for boys, whose suicide rates have always been higher, are also grim. After peaking in the s and declining for a decade and a half, their suicide rate climbed by more than 30 percent between and , to As troubling as those national numbers are, the crisis in Utah has become particularly acute. The suicide rate among children in the state between the ages of 10 and 17 doubled from to , five times the average increase for the nation, according to the CDC.
Adolescents and Tobacco: Trends
Use of alternative medicines has doubled among kids, especially teens
It may come as no surprise that the influence of Christianity in the United States is waning. Rates of church attendance, religious affiliation, belief in God, prayer and Bible-reading have been dropping for decades. More than any other generation before them, Gen Z does not assert a religious identity. They might be drawn to things spiritual, but with a vastly different starting point from previous generations, many of whom received a basic education on the Bible and Christianity. And it shows: The percentage of Gen Z that identifies as atheist is double that of the U.
Childhood Obesity Facts
In the United States, the percentage of children and adolescents affected by obesity has more than tripled since the s. Genetic factors are difficult to change. However, people and places can play a role in helping children achieve and maintain a healthy weight.
A new study published in JAMA Pediatrics shows that since , the use of alternative medicines, such as herbal products and nutraceuticals, among children has doubled. The University of Illinois at Chicago researchers who conducted the study cite an increased use of Omega-3 fatty acids and melatonin among adolescents ages 13 to 18 as the primary driver of the change, despite clinical recommendations against use of such supplements in children. Use of dietary supplements, of which herbal, non-vitamin alternative medicines are one type, remained high but otherwise stable, with approximately one-third of children using a dietary supplement. Study author Dima Qato says the widespread use of supplements among children and the increased use of alternative medicines among teens is worrisome. As a result, we know very little about their safety and effectiveness, especially in children," said Qato, assistant professor of pharmacy systems, outcomes and policy at the UIC College of Pharmacy.