To wrap up this segment I would like to end on the mention of love. Through all of the struggles that teenagers go though, it is important to remember to love them through whatever they do. If they are your child, sibling, or friend look out for them and have their best interest at heart. Help teach them and talk to them about these certain topics. Try to show remind them of the long-term health effects. Talk, Listen, have patience, and love them!
I feel that middle school and high school are a key part in our mental health. Those years are the beginning of what we shape our personalities to be like and who we want to be. With that though I think we also help shape the lives of those around us sometimes for the better and sometimes for the worse. The pressures that are put on by peers can really change ones future these stages of life seem to be the start of many health issues. With eating disorders, sexual activities, depression, drugs, alcohol, etc. all tie back to starting in the teenage years. If you have a great set of friends and you are a hard worker your future seems pretty bright. But for those who are picked on, or who are left out they can really struggle mentally through out their lives. It is crucial in high school how peers treat other because it can shape people for their futures. For in those year teenagers are at their most vulnerable time. Anything that is said can trigger a thought, and can change a life.
This could not be a blog about teens without the mention of sexual relationships, after all isn’t that the “peak of our raging hormones”? Sex can have two types of effects: mental and physical. The physical usually takes charge in the beginning and then is followed by the mental. I think people in general tend to only care about the physical aspect of it, with the chances of getting an STD or pregnant. The mental part which both boys and girls go through is never talked about. In high schools it is very common to talk about ones sexual relationship and how great it is. Peers tend to make fun of those who are saving themselves. Many teenagers are pressured into having sex, very few have sex when they are ready to. Unfortunately with that there becomes a mental issue that follows. Many teenagers feel different afterwards, realizing they have given away something that they will never get back. Many of my high school friends had the same experience, once the truth came out they all thought it was a mistake, and it was nothing they thought it would be. Teenagers tend to have a different view on sex, they see it through how the media portrays it. Through different songs, books, movies, and television shows it is no wonder why teenagers want it. It is all the glamour of the action and never the harm of the action. Seeing sex as a light deal or the only way to prove your love, it is easy to see teenagers give into this pressure, and it changes a part of their life that they can never get back.
From every story that I have heard/read about I have gathered the following information: when it comes to drugs, adolescents know the harm they can cause. They know that they become a risk when they do drugs, so why do them? Pressure, teenagers feel that they are expected to try them. In the beginning no one really enjoys doing them, until they are hooked. Many teenagers feel that they will not do it enough times to really cause any permanent damage. As long as they stay on the lighter drugs than they are okay. When as we know, no one can really stay on the lighter ones for so long. Eventually their bodies become numb to it and they have to up the dose. When the higher doses are not doing it they try a new drug, and so on. With this topic I think it might have a taboo on it with parents, I don’t think any parents really talk to their children about drugs. When they do talk to their children it is mostly “don’t do them cause they are bad”. Some parents never really have a conversation about what it can do to your health and to your future. I don’t think that adolescents see the full extent of the behaviors it causes and the permanent damages it can do.
USA Today newspaper came out with the recent statistics of drug use click here to check them out
For me I tend to get very heated about this topic,because I feel that there is such a lack of understanding to how harmful this habit of drinking can really be. If anyone were to look back on their high school years which was talked about more in health classes or with parents, smoking or drinking? Of course smoking should be talked about and the harms that come with it, I would say that the amount taught about that is great. But I feel that alcohol should be able to have some more attention brought to it. The only thing that seems to be a worry to teenagers with alcohol is that it sometimes, only sometimes can it affect your judgement. No teenager cares to think about what damage it can do to your liver, kidneys, and brain (to mention a few). It would be interesting to see if the rates of adolescent drinking would decrease with the increase of education on it.
Today, drinking among teenagers is extremely common, and with the invincible mentality they tend to seem no harm in it. Drinking is a fun way to let loose and have the troubles of the day be set free. In high school parties now it is hard to find one without any alcohol (unless it is a mormon party). Adolescents have a pressure to drink, if you deny drinking, for the most part people will usually stop asking you to attend their parties. So, do you sacrifice your health for a shot of popularity? To many teens this is answered with yes, for it can’t do too much damage. When in reality it can and will, not only does this affect an individual though but when one drinks it can affect multiple people. There are too many stories about drinking and driving, and the casualties that follow it. In my high school we had something called the senior curse, every year a senior would die do to drinking and driving. For my peers it was real, but this would not stop them. The school and the community put a program together called shattered lives, in which they would set up a car scene and have the students watch the attempt to rescue the lives of those in the accident. It was just a price my peers would pay to fit in and be popular. Now I am sad to say that many of my friends are hard drinkers and find it is the only way to escape reality.
This subject is one we can all relate to, for many of us have known someone who has been affected by this disorder whether it is a family members, friends, or even oneself, we all have seen someone close suffer from this disorder. I am sure we even have friends who struggle without us even knowing. This disease is very common among teens in which the pressure comes from all around. It can be the media, friends, and even parents that start this issue.
Eating disorders are extremely sneaky, they start out slow and continue to grow until the problem is a disease. This disease will never fully go away, it is a day-to-day struggle. The thoughts and images are something that those who suffer from this face all the time. To me this subject is very prevalent in my life, this past year I had a very close friend suffer from this to the point that it was the cause of her death. I heard her story and it has caused me to wonder if we all suffer from this.
How many of us can say we wake up everyday or go to bed thinking our body is just perfect? For those of you who can my hats off to you, but I don’t think many of us can say that. Eating disorders alway start with an idea, we crave to obtain that perfect body image. As a society we say the thinner the better, there is a pressure to fit into. Most disorders start out in the adolescent years, do those who start really think about how this will ruin their body? The answer is NO! teenagers are trying to get the image as fast as they can, along with thinking that this disease will never happen to them. If you or someone you know is suffering from this please know or let them know how beautiful they really are. If you need help here is a link that helps talk more about the disease and about how to find a cure.
While I was doing some research for this post I saw some very interesting statistics. Of all those who are chain smokers now started smoking while they were teenagers. It has been a life-long struggle for many, and it causes of death in the end. The CDC how summed up the statistics the best, People who begin smoking at an early age are more likely to develop a severe addiction to nicotine than those who start at a later age. Of adolescents who have smoked at least 100 cigarettes in their lifetime, most of them report that they would like to quit, but are not able to do so Many of the stories I read and those I have heard majority of teenagers start out young due to peer pressure. For those about to smoke for the first time, it was for the image. Adolescents see it in movies, books, popular television shows, in their very own high school the popular kids all did it. In my high school, smoking is more to be seen then it was to be enjoyed. Of all my friends who smoked none of them thought about the consequences of their health and the future. It was to fit in at that moment, to look older and in control. When in reality they lose all control, before they really see what they have gotten themselves into they are addicted.