Teens turn to Internet to cope with health challenges [news release]
From the 2 June 2015 Northwestern University news release
National survey explores how and why teens use online health information and digital tools
June 2, 2015 | by Julie Deardorff
EVANSTON, Ill. — At a time when teenagers are grappling with new and often confusing health concerns, the overwhelming majority — 84 percent — turn to the Internet, according to the first national study in more than a decade to examine how adolescents use digital tools for health information.
But while most teens tap online sources to learn more about puberty, drugs, sex, depression and other issues, a surprising 88 percent said they do not feel comfortable sharing their health concerns with Facebook friends or on other social networking sites, according to the study by Northwestern University researchers.
The report yields important information for public health organizations trying to reach adolescents. Nearly one third of the teenagers surveyed said the online information led to behavior changes, such as cutting back on soda, trying healthier recipes and using exercise to combat depression. One in five teens surveyed, or 21 percent, meanwhile, have downloaded mobile health apps.
“We found some real surprises about what teens are doing online when it comes to their health,” said Ellen Wartella, director of Northwestern’s Center on Media and Human Development and lead author of the report.
“We often hear about all the negative things kids are doing online, but teens are using the Internet to take care of themselves and others around them,” said Wartella, the Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani Professor in Communication in Northwestern’s School of Communication.
“The new study underscores how important it is to make sure there is accurate, appropriate and easily accessible information available to teens, because it’s used and acted upon.”**
KidsHealth provides information about health, behavior, and development from before birth through the teen years.Material is written by doctors in understandable language at three levels: parents, kids, and teens. KidsHealth also provides families with perspective, advice, and comfort about a wide range of physical, emotional, and behavioral issues that affect children and teens
Medline Plus (National Insitutes of Health) is a great starting point for reliable health information.Over 750 topics on conditions, diseases, and wellness. Information on drugs, herbs, and supplements. Links to directories (health care providers, health care facilities, etc) and organizations which provide health information. Surgery videos, interactive health tutorials, and more.
The CDC is the US government’s primary way to communicate information on diseases, conditions, and safety. Information may be found in areas as ….
Consumer Health Library Guide – University of Toledo
mostly link to free reputable Web sites
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