Skip to content

School health & wellness news roundup: Week of May 18, 2015

May 22, 2015

From this week’s news:

  • More U.S. Kids Getting Mental Health Treatment
    Health Day: The number of U.S. children and teens being treated for mental health issues has risen by about 50 percent in the past 20 years — with most of those kids having relatively mild symptoms, a new study published in New England Journal of Medicine finds.
  • A new poll shows gaps in children’s behavioral health treatment
    Michigan Radio: A new poll shows parents are hesitant to talk to doctors about their children’s behavioral challenges. Nearly half of parents believed that behavioral issues were not medical problems. Another 40% of parents say they would rather handle it themselves. Roughly 30% say they would rather speak to someone other than a doctor. The poll found more than 60% of parents will talk to their children’s doctor if the child appears unusually sad for more than a month.
  • School Bullying, Cyberbullying Continue to Drop
    US News & World Report: The percentage of students who reported being bullied or cyberbullied reached a record low in 2013, but female students are still victimized at higher rates. The department released the results of the latest School Crime Supplement to the National Crime Victimization Survey, which showed that in 2013, the percentage of students ages 12-18 who reported being bullied dropped to 21.5% from 27.8% in 2011, and a high of 31.7% in 2007. The percentage of students who reported being cyberbullied also fell to 6.9% in 2013, down from 9% in 2011.
  • Mindfulness Training in Health Education Can Reduce Student Stress
    Education News: Research shows that mindfulness training for students could help in the reduction of stress levels by teaching them a variety of ways to handle difficulty and stress. A number of studies have been performed, showing how mindfulness can help students physically, psychologically, and emotionally, in addition to improving their academic performance.
  • Suicide Rates Climb Dramatically for Young Black Children, Study Finds
    Ed Week Rules for Engagement Blog: A stable overall rate of suicide among children age 5-11 over the last two decades obscured a troubling demographic shift: While rates of suicide dropped for white children during that time period, they climbed significantly for black children, found a new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association Pediatrics.
  • Obesity disparity grew among U.S. kindergarteners
    Reuters: Obesity rates among children entering kindergarten in the U.S. have increased since 1998 – except among those from the wealthiest families, according to new research. The findings, published in JAMA Pediatrics, add to evidence that suggests not all young people are benefiting from a leveling out of obesity rates as reported last year by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
  • Preschoolers Need More Opportunities for Active Play, Study Concludes
    Ed Week Schooled in Sports Blog: Preschool-aged children at child-care centers need far more opportunities for physical activity, suggests a study published in the journal Pediatrics. In total, only 12 percent of the activities in an average day at child-care centers were considered active play opportunities. Outdoor free play was the most common active-play opportunity. On average, children logged 33 minutes outdoors on a daily basis—far lower than the 60 minutes scheduled at each. Beyond that, 26% of the average day was devoted to naptime.

School health & wellness news roundup: Week of May 11, 2015

May 15, 2015

From this week’s news:

  • Study Links Sleep Troubles to Children’s Mental Health
    Health Day:
    There is a link between sleep and young children’s mental health, a new study published in the Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics suggests. Researchers looked at sleep patterns and the mental health of 1,000 children. They found that those with sleep disorders at age 4 were at increased risk for mental health problems — such as anxiety and depression — at age 6. They also discovered that children with mental health problems at age 4 were at increased risk for sleep disorders at age 6.
  • CDC: 1 in 10 Children Diagnosed With ADHD
    Health Day:
    One in 10 children and teens has been diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That number has remained relatively steady since 2007, according to government estimates. Among all age groups combined, 9.5 percent of children and teens had ever been diagnosed with ADHD. Only 3 percent of 4- and 5-year-olds had been diagnosed with ADHD, the report found, but that number jumped to 9.5 percent for children ages 6 to 11.
  • Growing interest: School-grown vegetables increase salad selection
    Science Daily:
    If kids grow vegetables, they’re more likely to eat them. A new Cornell study published in Acta Paediatrica shows that when garden grown vegetables were slipped into school salads, kids were over four times as likely to take a salad.
  • Childhood obesity influenced by how kids are fed, not just what they eat
    Science Daily:
    As the childhood obesity epidemic increases, researchers are discovering that the way caregivers feed their kids may be just as important as what they give them to eat. It’s estimated that by 2020, 16 million kids under the age of 5 will be obese. Currently, most public health initiatives are focused on promoting healthy eating and physical activity to reverse the trend. However, the origins of childhood obesity may be as much about psychology as biology.

School health & wellness news roundup: Week of May 4, 2015

May 8, 2015

From this week’s news:

  • Impact of family, neighborhood on mental health revealed in comprehensive study
    Science Daily:
    A total of 542,195 children were tracked for 11 years for incident internalizing and externalizing disorders. Key findings from the study include that high neighborhood deprivation was associated with a 2-fold higher risk of conduct disorder, a 40% increased risk of anxiety disorder and a 20% increased risk of mood disorders, after adjustment for individual factors. Moderate neighborhood deprivation was associated with a 30% increased risk of ADHD, after adjustments.
  • Kids Overeat When They’re Stressed, Study Says
    TIME Health: According to a new study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, kids are more likely to overeat when they are upset, especially if their parents have used food as a reward in the past. The study notes that stress eating is a learned and unnatural behavior, since stress and emotional turmoil usually reduce appetite, rather than increasing it. The fact that children were found to have stress eating tendencies at this age suggests that emotional overeating is something children learn in early childhood.
  • Laws on junk food in schools fail to help poor fight obesity, study says
    LA Times Science: Since state laws made it harder for California elementary school kids to get their hands on sugary drinks and junk food snacks on campus, researchers found, students’ risk of becoming overweight or obese fell slightly — but mostly if they came from higher-income neighborhoods.
  • Nat’l Dairy Council Stresses Importance of Milk in Schools
    Education News:
    A new report from the National Dairy Council concerning milk consumption at school has found that fewer students are drinking low-fat and fat-free milk — and may be missing out on key nutrients.

School health & wellness news roundup: Week of Apr. 20, 2015

April 24, 2015

From this week’s news:

  • Addressing Mental Health Concerns: A Key to School Improvement
    Ed Week Leadership 360 Blog: This guest post is authored by Dr. Howard S Adelman and Dr. Linda Taylor. They have worked together for 40 years focusing on improving how schools and communities address a wide range of mental health, psychosocial, and educational problems experienced by children and adolescents. Anyone who has spent time in schools can itemize the multifaceted mental health and psychosocial concerns that require attention so that schools and students can succeed. As a result, many stakeholders are interested in enhancing how schools address such concerns.
  • Kids with ADHD must squirm to learn, study says
    Science Daily: Excessive movement common among children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder is actually vital to how they remember information and work out complex cognitive tasks, according to a new study published in the Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology. The findings show the longtime prevailing methods for helping children with ADHD may be misguided.
  • Chronic Neglect Can Lead to Aggression in Kids
    Psych Central:
    Emerging research from the University at Buffalo School of Social Work suggests parents who chronically neglect their children increase the chance that the child will develop aggressive and delinquent tendencies in adolescence. Investigators discovered a failure to provide was the key aspect of neglect that linked to later aggression and delinquency, and a lack of adequate supervision did not link to the same outcomes, even after accounting for the contributions of other forms of maltreatment.
  • Schools and Parents Disagree over Serving Breakfast in Classrooms
    Huffington Post:  The number of breakfasts served in the nation’s schools has doubled in the last two decades. Instead of providing low-income students free or reduced-price meals in the cafeteria, they’re increasingly serving all children in the classroom. Food policy advocates say the change increases equity; however, it’s fueled a backlash from parents and teachers. They contend that it takes up class time that should be devoted to learning and wastes food by serving it to kids who don’t want or need it.

School health & wellness news roundup: Week of Apr. 13, 2015

April 17, 2015

From this week’s news:

  • Withholding Recess as a Punishment Declines
    Education Week: It’s not uncommon for elementary school teachers to take away recess time to discipline students. Withholding cherished playtime clearly communicates to children that their misbehavior is unacceptable, they argue. But more and more, schools are doing away with withholding recess for disciplinary reasons, pointing to research findings that unstructured play and exercise benefit students both inside and outside the classroom.
  • Adverse childhood events appear to increase the risk of being a hypertensive adult
    Science Daily:
    Children who experience multiple traumatic events, from emotional and sexual abuse to neglect, have higher blood pressures as young adults than their peers, researchers report in the journal Circulation. Researchers found the blood pressure increase resulting from experiencing multiple events wasn’t fully explained by known concurrent risk factors such as being male, black, a low socioeconomic status, inactivity, obesity, and smoking.
  • High school, middle school kids now use more e-cigs than tobacco: CDC
    The Washington Post:
    Findings from the CDC show that between 2013 and 2014, e-cigarette use among high school students increased from 4.5 to 13.4 percent. Usage also more than tripled among middle school students. Only among black students was another tobacco product, cigars, more popular than e-cigarettes. Public health officials fear this startling increase could reverse decades of efforts combating the scourge of smoking.

School health & wellness news roundup: Week of Apr. 6, 2015

April 10, 2015

From this week’s news:

  • Family Stress Linked to Teen Obesity in Study
    HealthDay: Family stress may put teens at increased risk for being overweight or obese, a new study in the journal Preventive Medicine finds. Researchers analyzed data from more than 4,700 American teens born between 1975 and 1990 to assess the effects of three specific sources of family stress: financial problems, a mother’s poor health, and family disruption. Experiencing family disruption and financial stress, repeatedly throughout childhood, was associated with overweight or obesity by the time adolescent girls turned 18.
  • Study Finds Pattern of Mental & Physical Disorders among US Teens
    Psych Central: An analysis published in Psychosomatic Medicine of U.S. teenagers aged 13 to 18 suggests that every third teenager has suffered from one mental disorder and one physical disease, and these co-occurrences come in specific associations or combinations. Researchers found that depression occurs together with diseases of the digestive system, eating disorders with seizures and anxiety disorders together with arthritis, heart disease as well as diseases of the digestives system.
  • More Black, Latino Teens Say they’re Online ‘Almost Constantly’
    NPR Blog:
    Boys like Facebook, girls like Instagram. Wealthier kids Snapchat. Lower income kids Facebook. And somehow Google+ is still relevant. So says the Pew Research Center’s latest study, “Teens, Social Media & Technology Overview 2015.” Results show 92% of teens report going online daily, 24% say they go online “almost constantly” and 88% of teens 13 to 17 have a phone, and nearly three-quarters have or have access to a smartphone.
%d bloggers like this: