Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Adolescent and Health Disparities

Health disparities are preventable differences in the burden of disease, injury, violence, or opportunities to achieve optimal health that are experienced by socially disadvantaged populations. Populations can be defined by factors such as race or ethnicity, gender, education or income, disability, geographic location (e.g., rural or urban), or sexual orientation. Health disparities are inequitable and are directly related to the historical and current unequal distribution of social, political, economic, and environmental resources.

Health disparities the result of multiple factors, including
  • Poverty
  • Environmental threats
  • Inadequate access to health care
  • Individual and behavioral factors
  • Educational inequalities
Health disparities are also related to inequalities in education. School dropout is associated with multiple health and social problems.2-3 In general, people with less education are more likely to experience a range of health risks such as obesity, substance abuse, and intentional injuries and unintended, compared with individuals with more education.4 higher levels of education are associated with longer life and greater likelihood of obtaining or understanding basic health information and services needed to make appropriate health decisions.5 -7

At the same time, good health is associated with academic success. Health risks such as teenage pregnancy, poor dietary habits, inadequate physical activity, physical and emotional abuse, substance abuse, and gang involvement have a significant impact on how students perform in school.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Asthma illness among Children and Youth

Asthma is a chronic disease leading to children and young people in the United States. In 2007, 5.6 million school-age children and youth (5-17 years of age) today reported that asthma, and 2.9 million had an asthma episode or attack in the previous year. 1 On average, in a classroom of 30 children, about 3 are likely to have asthma.

Asthma is a major cause of school absenteeism. In 2003, an estimated 12.8 million days of school missed because of asthma among the more than 4 million children who reported at least one asthma attack in the previous year.

Low-income populations, minorities and children living in inner cities experience more emergency room visits, hospitalizations and deaths due to asthma than the general population.

The estimates for 2005-2007 indicate that Black and Hispanic children in Puerto Rico had higher prevalence rates compared with non-Hispanic whites.

The estimated cost of treating asthma in children under 18 years is $ 3.2 billion per year.

Asthma attacks, also known as episodes, can be caused by snuff smoke, dust mites, animal hair and feathers, certain molds, chemicals and strong smells in the school environment.

Asthma can be controlled with proper diagnosis, appropriate asthma care and management activities.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Alcohol & Drug Use Health Problem

Alcohol is one of the most widely used active ingredients in the world. Alcohol consumption and binge drinking among young people of our country is a major public health problem:

Alcohol is used by more young people in the United States that snuff or illicit drugs.

Excessive alcohol consumption is associated with about 75,000 deaths per year.

Alcohol is a factor in approximately 41% of deaths from car accidents.

Among young people, using alcohol and other drugs has been linked to unintentional injuries, fights, academic and employment problems, and illegal behavior.

Long term alcohol abuse is associated with liver disease, cancer, cardiovascular disease, neurological damage and psychiatric problems like depression, anxiety and antisocial personality disorder.

Drug use contributes directly and indirectly to the HIV and alcohol and drugs contribute significantly to morbidity and mortality.

Since 1988, all states prohibit the purchase of alcohol by young people under 21. Therefore, consumption of alcohol is defined as the consumption of alcohol before the minimum age for legal drinking age of 21. Current alcohol use among high school students remained stable from 1991 to 1999 and then decreased from 50% in 1999 to 42% in 2009. In 2009, 24% of high school students reported heavy episodic or binge drinking.

Zero tolerance laws in all states it is illegal for youth under 21 years of age to drive with any measurable amount of al cohol in your system. In 2009, 10% of high school students reported driving a car or other vehicle during the past 30 days who had been drinking alcohol. In addition, 28% of students traveling in a car or other vehicle during the last 30 days driven by someone who had been drinking alcohol.