Youth drinking has many immediate and long-term adverse consequences including injuries, risky sexual activity, and increased risk of later alcohol abuse and dependence. This national longitudinal study examined the effects of exposure to alcohol advertising on consumption of alcohol by youth over time. The study combined a household telephone survey with data on alcohol advertising expenditures and exposure to advertisements. Youth who saw more alcohol advertisements drank more on average—every additional advertisement seen increased the number of drinks consumed by 1%. Each additional dollar spent per capita on alcohol advertising was associated with a 3% increase in the number of drinks consumed. The study clearly indicates that alcohol advertising is related to the amount of youth drinking and suggests that limiting advertisements would have a beneficial effect on drinking problems among youth.
Alcohol use by mean advertising exposure, market advertising expenditures per capita, and sex.
Examining outcomes such as quality of life among patients with chronic conditions is important to better understand the impact of these illnesses on children and adolescents. This study followed a cohort of more than 600 adolescents with chronic illness at a mean age of 16 years into adulthood, at a mean age of 33 years. Adolescents with chronic physical illness had a measurably lower quality of life as adults than their healthy peers. Adolescents with Axis I psychiatric disorders had more problematic social relationships as adults, and those with personality disorders had later problems with social relationships, psychological well-being, and impaired role functioning. Mental disorders among adolescents appear to have a greater impact on adult quality of life than do chronic physical illnesses.
Association of mental disorders and physical illnesses at the mean age of 16 years with 5 quality-of-life domains at the mean age of 33 years.
With the marked increase in the prevalence of obesity in the United States and around the world, increased attention is being given to the physical environment in which children are raised and its effects on physical activity. This study examined 786 children in 10 urban and rural sites across the United States. Children living in the neighborhoods parents perceived as most unsafe had a 4-fold increased odds of being overweight at age 7 compared with children living in the neighborhoods perceived as being the safest. Redesign of neighborhoods has the potential to not only decrease the rates of intentional and unintentional injuries but to promote physical activity and contribute to reversing the increasing prevalence of obesity.
In Tourette syndrome, tics typically begin at the ages of 5 or 6 years. This study examined the clinical course of tics in patients with Tourette syndrome, as well as accompanying obsessive-compulsive (OC) symptoms. Eighty-five percent of patients observed for a mean of 7.6 years reported a reduction in tic symptoms during adolescence. The average age of worst-ever tic severity was 10.6 years. Among the 41% of patients who reported having at least moderate OC symptoms, worst-ever OC symptoms occurred about 2 years later than worst-ever tic symptoms. Obsessive-compulsive symptoms were more likely to persist than tic symptoms.
This Month in Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2006;160(1):13. doi:10.1001/archpedi.160.1.13