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Saturday, May 19, 2012

Teen Ambivalence Towards Pregnancy Points To Social Problems

Teenagers in the United States are more likely to become teen parents than teenagers in other western countries. They aren’t having more sex -- they’re using less contraception, according to a study in 2011. The study suggests that this phenomenon is due to limited access to healthcare and contraceptives and also less social acceptance of teenage sexuality.

But Kearney and Levine suggest something different -- that teenage girls growing up in poverty don't see a downside to pregnancy.

This may sound surprising -- it's a contrast to the familiar assumption that teenagers accidentally get pregnant, drop out of school, and become financially distressed.

Instead, Kearney argues that teenage girls who are getting pregnant already have low economic prospects, and this lowers the opportunity cost of having a baby.

Their analysis takes a look at correlations between teen mothers and poverty rates, and sets them against ethnographic and sociological research about causation. “We know [from correlations] that girls who give birth as teens, go on to have higher rates of poverty, welfare use, lower rates of labor force attachment and lower wages. Children of teen moms are more likely to drop out of high school, live in poverty,” said Kearney.

But if the teen mothers had waited until their twenties to have children, would their economic prospects have been any better? The data argue no, according to Kearney.

Kearney and Levine's data results corroborate the following scenarios:

1. “You have a middle class girl, who’s playing her sports in high school, doing her homework, looking forward to going to college. Those girls tend to avoid pregnancy because they have other things they’re looking forward to doing and they know having a kid will set them back."

2. "[You have a young, poor woman] giving birth when they’re unmarried because they view their lives as out of control. They don’t view much opportunity for themselves, and they don’t view their partners as bringing much to the table.”

So what does that mean? This implies that the girls most likely to get pregnant are already living in the social conditions that lead to conditions of poverty.

But aren't most teen pregnancies unintended?

Kearney acknowledges that her argument could be controversial, especially in the advocacy community, because she talks about CHOICES that girls are making, even though data show that the majority of teen pregnancies are reportedly “unintended.”

However, she says this is misleading. “You look at the girls who had a baby and reported it was unintended -- many of them were not using any form of contraception. They weren’t actively trying to have a baby, but they weren’t actively not trying to have a baby... If a girl is ambivalent about getting pregnant, then giving her a sex-ed class, won’t solve the problem,” she said.

Policy Implications

Kearney says this information should radically change how the U.S. addresses the issue of teen pregnancy. “Expanding contraception access, sex-ed curriculums, abstinence curriculum.... I’m not saying we should throw those programs away, but they are going to have a very small impact...because it doesn’t address the underlying social problems,” she said.

Instead, she argues that teen pregnancy prevention programs should address the bigger issues of education and life-trajectory. "We need to change the outlook and expand the opportunities available to economically disadvantaged girls and their partners. They need to be on a path out of poverty, on a path to complete school, to go to college to have those aspirations,” said Kearney. She says that holistic programs that really try and alter a young girl's reality, while more expensive, are the most successful in preventing teen pregnancy.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Homeopathic Approach to Teenage Problems

I concur that teen years are rugged, but most teens dominate the external pressures with quality friends, school achievements, social activities and a robust self-image. In present times, teenagers are confronted with a challenging, vulnerable time in life with school and social pressures, extracurricular activities, and maybe even a part time job. Parenting is certainly not easy, as an unruly teenager can be overwhelming for a family. If your teen is uncooperative, angry, abusive or detached, your home may become an arena of war filled with havoc. Cumbersome teen behaviors do not always kick-start at home, but can wobble the home and family.

Teenage problems are surging day by day and teens are receptive to bad company and behave inappropriately. The teenage years are a juncture of maturing physically, cognitively, getting to be more independent and becoming aware of how to fit in with peers. Friends become much more important than family. At this phase in your child’s life, you want to treat them as adults, despite the fact, that they are not yet ready to accept that responsibility of being an adult. Teenagers have to keep pace to survive in today’s world of broken homes, dysfunctional families, unsafe sex, drugs, etc. This article will give you inklings on how to resolve teen dilemmas with parental as well as homeopathic support.

Prominent Teenage problems:

Sibling rivalry: This Is common and healthy, however, it can get uncontrollable due to stressors like unusual jealousy, parents in divorce, peer pressure leading to violent behavior.

Peer Pressure: Most parents are not able to comprehend the profundity of peer pressure effects. Peer pressure can be positive and negative. Positive peer pressure is healthy and can make your child feel good about his decisions. With negative peer pressure, teens may give into wrong things like smoking, drinking, drugs, stealing, or sexual relationships, in order to liked or fit into a group.

Body image: Most teens struggle with their self esteem during puberty changes. Girls may feel coerced to be thin and boys may feel that they don’t look big and muscular enough. Negative comments from parents or peers can have repercussions on a teenagers’ body image and self esteem.

School bullying: Bullying by seniors can be physical, verbal or emotional and can make teens feel lonely, depressed and unsafe.

Teen dating and abusive relationships: If your teen is showing physical signs of injury, is having habitual mood swings, with emotional outbursts, starts using drugs or alcohol or is isolating herself from family and friends, there is a likelihood she is in an abusive relationship.

Teen date rape: Mixed emotions of fear, anger and guilt can isolate these teens from their friends and family, leading to eating disorders, depression, self abusive behaviors, drug or alcohol use and abusive relationships.

Teen pregnancies: This dilemma poses an increased risk to the health for the teen mother and her baby. Her opportunities to build a future are diminished as she is likely to drop out of high school.

Eating disorders: This is a psychological problem, whether it is obsession with limiting or overindulging in food, and is an attempt to gain control, get attention or raise self esteem. The three main eating disorders are Anorexia or self starvation, Bulimia or forced vomiting after eating large meals, and Binge eating or compulsive emotional eating.

Shoplifting: Some teens shop lift under peer pressure, for a thrilling experience, to rebel, to feel a sense of control, to get attention or to comply with their addictions of drugs, alcohol, nicotine.

Teen Depression: Teen depression could be an outcome of breaking up with a boyfriend or girlfriend, parents getting divorced, struggle with school grades, bullying, peer pressure, etc. Teenagers react to their depression by getting into trouble with alcohol, drugs, sex or being rebellious.

Suicidal tendencies: All the above issues can provoke a teen towards suicidal tendencies.

Symptoms of troubled Teenagers:

Behaving hostile, violent, defensive.

Truancy - Missing school.

Dropping of grades at school.

Lack of motivation.

Detaching from family and friends.


Habitual mood swings.

Hurting self, others, animals, property.

Limiting or overindulging in food.

Change in sleep habits.

Abusing alcohol, drugs, smoking.

Sexual indulgence.

Running away from home.

Homeopathic approach to Teenage problems:

The homeopathic constitutional modus operandi can come to the aide of teenage problems associated with physical and emotional stress. Homeopathic treatment is affordable, safe, natural, effective and permanent. Homeopathic remedies precisely act at the level of mind and body together, to offset emotional disruptions such as anxiety, anger, insecurity, obsessive traits, jealousy, paranoia, depression, neurosis, etc. By relieving these emotions, homeopathic remedies facilitate a harmonious rapport with health. Homeopathic remedies can induce a positive change in teens who are suffering from distressing states of mind, emotions and behavior. Homeopathy can facilitate the patients to be less hostile, much more accommodating, easier to live with, and more competent in dealing with stressful situations. After constitutional homeopathic treatment, patients become more rational, much less reactive and more compliant. The traits of impulsivity and hyperactivity become much more controllable. Conflict with parents, siblings, schoolmates, and friends, lying, stealing and hurting others become significantly less frequent. Homeopathic remedies help you appreciate your own value by building self esteem and helping develop a better sense of right and wrong. Teens treated successfully with Homeopathy can truly be called trouble-free kids. Their parents, family members, teachers, and friends can finally go back to living a more peaceful life.

Constitutional Remedies

Some homeopathic remedies that are commonly used to treat teenage problems are given below. These are just a few of the possible homeopathic remedies and are mentioned only to create awareness of their effectiveness in teenage problems. It is not advisable to resort to self-medication for any disease.

Homeopathic remedies for Teenage problems:

Aurum Metallicum: This is an exceptional remedy for patients who are depressed, cynical, hopeless, and suicidal. These patients are very low-spirited, unresponsive, have a weak memory and are always blaming themselves. They are rebellious and self destructive. They are extremely slow in doing things, are oversensitive to noise, excitement, confusion, and spend sleepless nights sobbing aloud with frightful dreams. They have an increased appetite and thirst.

Chamomilla: This remedy is suited to children who are short tempered, oversensitive, vindictive, restless, destructive, impatient and intolerant. These patients are always moaning because they cannot have what they want and cry during sleep with frightful dreams. They are addicted to coffee and narcotics.

Colubrina: This remedy is recommended for teenagers with weight problems and for those who want to reduce cravings and encourage better eating habits. It is also for patients who are sexually very active, and are addicted to stimulants like coffee, alcohol, tobacco, drugs (like opium). It is an excellent remedy for hangovers. These patients are always fault finding, very sensitive to noises, odors, light and they don’t like to be touched.

Ignatia: This is a matchless remedy for grief and loss caused by a break up with a boyfriend or girlfriend, a move to a new school, loss of a parent or parental divorce. These patients cannot bear tobacco and coffee. They are alert, nervous, apprehensive, rigid and have noticeable mood swings.

Staphysagria: This remedy is indicated for persons whose poor self-image is due to a past hurt or insults that is followed by subdued anger or grief. They throw temper tantrums, have a deep-seated fear of rejection, are very sensitive to rudeness and are unable to fight for their own rights. These patients usually have a history of sexual abuse or emotional abandonment by their parents.

Tabacum: This remedy is recommended to patients who want to quit smoking and need help with withdrawal symptoms, such as irritability, nervousness, nail biting and insomnia. hese patients look pale, unhappy or depressed and are forgetful and discontented.

Self – care measures for Teenage problems:

Study your teen’s behavior and her reactions to stress.

Be a supportive parent, spend time listening and talking to your teen.

Reinforce communication at home, and try to minimize disputes.

Make sure your teen knows that you love him or her, even if their behavior is not approved.

Admire your child’s positive behaviors with rewards.

Be consistent in imposing rules and curfew times, and have consequences for breaking those rules.

Enforce basic behavior standards when your teenager is violent or uses obscene language.

Hence, consider homeopathy to help your teen successfully navigate the complicated teen landscape. Savor a quality kinship with your teenager, moreover have them value their second chance at a new life.

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