General Article Adolescent health in the UK today

Topic Selected: Adolescent Health
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Key trends in adolescent health

There are two general views of adolescent health. On one hand, adolescence can be regarded as a time of general good health and physical fitness. This is not a life period dominated by the big threats of older age; heart problems, cancer and lung disease for example. In addition, medical advances have helped in the management of chronic conditions such as asthma and childhood diabetes. However, the second view is that there is, in fact, much to be worried about; if asked about health in this age group many professionals would mention widespread use of alcohol, rising levels of obesity and worrying rates of sexually transmitted infections. As researchers have pointed out, there have been significant improvements in overall health outcomes in the last few decades among all age groups apart from adolescence. For example, mortality rates amongst young people aged 15-19 and 20-24 have risen above rates for those in the one to four age group, a reversal of...

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