18-21 years: Young Adult Archives - Nemours Blog

18-21 years: Young Adult

Melatonin: 5 Safety Tips for Kids and Teens

Melatonin: 5 Safety Tips for Kids and Teens

We all know that terrible feeling of not being able to sleep and drudging through the next day in a fog. If your child is having trouble sleeping, of course you want to help. You have probably heard of using melatonin for sleep problems. Its use has skyrocketed in the past few years. Melatonin is a hormone (or chemical messenger) made by the brain. It helps us fall asleep. Melatonin is also made as a dietary supplement and can be bought in the U.S. without a prescription. But is melatonin safe for kids and teens? Does it work? If melatonin is used with guidance from a health care provider, it is probably safe for short-term use in kids over 5 years. It can help kids and teens get some rest while they work through certain types of sleep problems. But it is still being studied so we don’t know for sure what […]

Let's Rethink How We Talk to Teens about Their Weight

Let’s Rethink How We Talk to Teens about Their Weight

Perhaps we need to rethink how we talk to our teenagers who have a weight issue. At the Nemours Eating Disorders Evaluation and Management Program, we see teenagers who pinpoint the onset of their eating disorder to comments made by well-intentioned doctors, coaches, or health teachers.

Helping Kids Avoid a College Campus Outbreak

Helping Kids Avoid a College Campus Outbreak

This time of year always reminds me of American humorist Erma Bombeck, who once wrote: “I take a very practical view of raising children. I put a sign in each of their rooms: ‘Checkout time is 18 years.’” When our teenagers go to college, we want them to acquire many things: new friends with diverse backgrounds, expanded interests, more independence, and, if they have time, an education. What we don’t want them to get? Sick. In a college campus outbreak. What’s an Outbreak? An outbreak is the occurrence of cases of disease in excess of what would normally be expected in a defined community, geographical area or season. A recent example of a college campus outbreak–last year’s mumps outbreak at Temple University. Here are some other real examples: Case 1: Meningitis  A student was rushed to the hospital after presenting to the student health center with a headache, stiff neck, and fever. Diagnosis: […]

Kids and ATVs: Ten Dos and Don'ts, Powered by Nemours Children's Health System

Kids and ATVs: Ten Dos and Don’ts

This article was written by Nemours Health & Prevention Services Intern Juliana Russo. All-terrain vehicles (ATVs) are NOT toys. Inez Tenenbaum, Chairman of the Consumer Product Safety Commission, stated that “every year 700 people die and 136,000 go to the emergency room because of ATV related injuries.” She also says, “ATVs are the fifth deadliest product that we oversee.” Nemours Children’s Health System supports the American Academy of Pediatrics policy statement, which strongly recommends that children under the age of 16 not ride ATVs. But, if you do allow your children to ride, we urge you to understand the risks: ATVs can weigh up to 850 pounds ATVs have a high center of gravity so they have a higher chance of flipping over Most ATVs can sustain high speeds over 60 mph, risking a child’s loss of control of the vehicle There are no seat belts, roll bars, air bags […]

Tips for Talking to Teens About Tattoos and Piercings, Powered by Nemours Children's Health System

Tips for Talking to Teens About Tattoos and Piercings

“Body modifications” like tattoos, piercings other than in the ears, and scarification have become a mainstream trend. It has also become popular for many young people to get dental implants in Beverly Hills or somewhere similar in order to achieve that perfect Instagram smile. These procedures might be safe for adults, but adolescents do not always think about the long-term ramifications of changing their bodies. Skin is not done growing until adulthood, so tattoos can stretch, fade or even become lopsided over time. They are hard to modify and even harder to remove. Piercings can heal over, defeating the point of getting one in the first place, whilst the jaw undergoes changes until the mid-twenties, making it much safer to get teeth alterations done at an older age. A report in 2010 found that 38 percent of 18 to 29-year-olds had at least one tattoo, and we suspect that the […]

Teens, Young Adults Account for Half of New STD Cases, by Robyn Miller, MD, Powered by Nemours Children's Health System

Teens, Young Adults Account for Half of New STD Cases

It’s enough to send parents running to lock their teens in their bedrooms: About 10 million 15- to 24-year-olds have a sexually transmitted disease (STD) — that’s half of the new STD cases reported each year. And in 2015, there were more STDs reported than ever. The top three most commonly reported STDs — chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis — were all at an all-time high, according to the annual STD surveillance report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). STDs are now more commonly referred to by the medical community as “sexually transmitted infections” or “STIs.” The Repercussions of Sex Before teens and young adults make that very adult decision to become sexually active, they need to understand that it can come with many very adult consequences, too. Pregnancy is often the biggest concern for sex-curious teens. Even though U.S. teen birth rates are at an historic low, […]

young men showcasing healthy eating in college

Healthy Eating in College

College is such an exciting time in a young person’s life. For many, it marks a new beginning and an age of independence students probably haven’t experienced before, especially if they move away from home and choose to live on campus. Suddenly your “baby” is solely responsible for waking up on time for class, doing laundry, and – maybe for the first time – making healthy food choices. Navigating the kitchen at home may be an easier task than navigating one of the many all-you-can-eat dining halls on campus. But fear not! It isn’t impossible to maintain a healthy lifestyle during the college years. Share the following tips with your teen to help with healthy eating in college. Stock up the mini-fridge. Healthy eating in college starts in the dorm room. Having nutritious food choices on hand is a must. Keeping things in a mini-fridge is always a good idea. […]

Bridging the Gap Year: College ASAP or a Break?

Recently, Malia Obama made the decision to take a gap year – a hiatus of 12 to 15 months between the end of high school and the start of college. While this news brought a spate of reactions from critics and supporters alike, Malia is among a growing number of students making this decision. In the past year, more academic proponents, including Ivy League schools, have come out in public support of gap years and more students are picking up on the trend. One of the most debated themes about the gap year is how young adults can afford a year of non-educational leave. The American Gap Association publishes annual statistics on gap years. Data show 35 percent of “gappers” attend private school (10 percent of students attend private high school nationwide) and indicate they have the support of their parents. Costs vary depending on the types of programs students […]

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