Report: Teens avoiding risky behaviors

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More high school students are abandoning specific unhealthy behaviors according to new data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Since 1991, the CDC has conducted a national youth risk behavior study (YRBS) by surveying high school students around the country and in specific states and large urban school districts about behavior.

The 2015 study found several areas of improvement among those surveyed:

  • Cigarette smoking among high school students is at its lowest level since the survey began in 1991.
  • The percentage of high school students who are currently sexually active dropped from 38 percent in 1991 to 30 percent in 2015.
  • The percentage of high school students who say they have taken prescription drugs without a prescription fell to 17 percent in 2015.
  • The percentage of high school students who had been in a physical fight in the last year decreased from 42 percent in 1991 to 23 percent in 2015.

Still, the survey found other problems:

  • 24 percent of students said they’ve used e-cigarettes, which doctors fear could hurt brain growth and cause long-term addiction.
  • The percentage of sexually active teens who used condoms dropped from 63 percent in 2003 to 57 percent in 2015.

More information on the study is available here.

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