Health and Medical News and Resources

General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

Discrimination Can Hurt Teens, Body and Soul

Study finds minority kids especially vulnerable, with effects both physical and mental

Discrimination experienced by U.S. teens from Latin American and Asian backgrounds can affect their grades and health, and is associated with depression, distress and reduced self-esteem, a new study has found….

Discrimination can be especially hard on teens, the study authors noted.

“These are the years when social identity is arguably more salient among teenagers who are struggling with defining who they are. Adding on a ‘layer’ of discrimination is not an easy thing for them to deal with,” one of the study authors, Andrew J. Fuligni, a professor of psychiatry at UCLA’s Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior, said in a university news release.

“Discrimination significantly predicted lower [grade-point averages], higher levels of depression, higher levels of distress, lower self-esteem and more physical complaints,” Fuligni added. “So the bottom line? Discrimination is harmful.”

The study was released online in advance of publication in an upcoming print issue of the Journal of Research on Adolescence. If you do not have a subscription to this journal, check with your local public or academic library to see if there is a way you can access it for free or a lower cost.

A few related resources
**Teen Health (Nemours Foundation) has information and advice for teens in many areas, including school and job topics as dealing with cliques

** Kids Health (for Parents) (Nemours Foundation) includes Emotion and Behavior topics as Cyberbullyingand Developing Your Child’s Self-Esteem

**Teen Mental Health (MedlinePlus) has great informational links for teens and parents

**The National Institute of Mental Health has information for Children and Adolescents

Remember your local public library!
**Your local public library not only has books, but information about local agencies which can assist you in many areas, including parenting, mental health, and dealing with discrimination. Ask for a reference librarian! She or he will give your professional confidential assistance in locating information online and in print.

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September 21, 2010 - Posted by | Consumer Health | ,

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