January 2013 - Emerging Trends in Adolescent Injury and Violence
The number one cause of preventable death and disability in the U.S. adolescents is injury. Nearly 72% of all deaths among adolescents between the ages of 10-24 are attributable to injuries from only four preventable causes: motor vehicle crashes, other unintentional injuries (suffocation, drowning, poisoning, fires and falls), homicide and suicide. These injuries, which are often preventable, take a major toll not only on the individual but on society. The cost of injury is often defined by mortality rates, but injuries can also cause lifelong disabilities, psychological effects and detriment to a person's overall health and well being. Additionally, monetary costs arise from medical expenses, police and fire services, property damage and wage losses.
In the past few years, the rising impact of electronic media and devices on adolescents' injury and interpersonal aggressions along with an upward trend in unintentional poisoning has presented new challenges for those working in adolescent health field. Comprehensive policy, system and environmental changes in combination with health education are needed in order to effectively prevent injuries. Many disciplines from health education to engineers, to policy makers, must work together marrying their expertise to protect the public from the consequences caused by injuries.
Motor vehicle crashes are leading cause of death for young people age 12 -19.
The proportion of drivers reportedly distracted at the time of a fatal crash has increased from 7% to 11% in past few years. Texting while driving appears to be the greatest risk factor.
Nearly 7.7% of high school students rarely wear a seat belt when riding in a car driven by someone else.
Adolescents between ages 10 -14 have the highest rate of sports and recreation related injury.
Many teens abuse prescription drugs in combination with alcohol or other drugs, increasing the risk for adverse outcomes.
Electronic aggression (bullying) appears to be greatest in middle and junior high school.
Nearly 16% have been bullied through e-mail, IM, web sites or texting.
Nearly 33 % of high school students engage in physical violence.
State and local agencies received more than 3 million reports of child maltreatment each year- that is nearly 6 reports every minute.
Risk and Protective Factors
Risk- not using seat belts, DUI, carrying weapons, not wearing protective equipment during sports, being associated with delinquent peers and engaging in physical fighting. Other factors include socioeconomic factors, such as family income, low parental education, single parent households, high poverty and residential instability.
Protective factors include family connectedness, commitment to school, problem solving skills, and intolerant attitude toward deviant behaviors, community cohesion and access to care.
Safety in Jamestown Schools is our #1 priority after educating your child. Please help us keep your child safe by reviewing some basic safety rules regarding strangers, biking and walking to school, following school rules, signing your child in/out of school and calling the office when your child is going to be absent for any reason. Welcome back and Happy 2013!