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    Sooner or later it's bound to happen to all teenagers: They wake up, peer in the mirror... and are horrified to find a huge, honking zit prominently displayed for the world to see. Unfortunately, teens and acne go together like peanut butter and jelly -- their bodies are simply primed to pump out pimples galore. "Teen acne usually shows up in teenagers between the ages of 10 and 20 and occurs because of hormonal changes that place during puberty," says David Bank, a dermatologist in Mt. Kisco, New York, and author of Beautiful Skin: Every Woman's Guide to Looking Her Best at Any Age.

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    Moms who do not give your kids the flu shot: It's time to stop the madness. According to the CDC, 105 KIDS DIED FROM THE FLU LAST YEAR -- and, of those, 90 PERCENT WERE NOT VACCINATED.

    Sorry for the all caps ... these new statistics upset me to my core.

    If the vision of your non-vaccinated child taking his last breath in the intensive care unit doesn't move you to do the right thing -- get your kid vaccinated! -- I don't know what will.

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  • Hot List

    6 Natural Ways to Prevent Teen Acne

    posted by Judy Dutton September 17 at 2:00 AM in Teen
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    Having a pimply teenager moping around the house, obsessing over each new zit they see in the mirror might almost seem like a rite of passage for moms. And dermatologists agree that these kids definitely have a LOT of company. "Teen acne affects about 85 percent of all teens, so it's a very common problem," says Susan Stuart, MD, a dermatologist in San Diego. And since hormonal changes are to blame for these breakouts, many moms might assume there's not much they can do to help. On the contrary! While it's impossible to keep the occasional pimple from rearing its head, there are plenty of things parents can do to ward off perpetual pizza face.

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  • Health Check

    How Much Sleep Does a Teenager Need?

    posted by Judy Dutton September 12 at 8:00 AM in Teen
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    Teenagers are notorious for staying up late, sleeping in, sporting PJs and bedhead at noon. But now that school's in full swing, it's essential that teens get enough sleep -- and a recent report from the American Academy of Pediatrics suggests that's not happening by a long shot. In its report, the AAP emphasized that insufficient sleep isn't just a quirk of teenagerdom, but "an important public health issue" that significantly affects kids' well being, safety, and academic success. The situation is so dire, the AAP recommended that schools delay the start of class to 8:30 a.m. or later to better sync with teens' sleep schedules so they can get a bit more precious shut-eye.

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    The “F” word in my house is a three-letter word: FAT. We don’t use the word in reference to people. We’ve determined it’s OK to use as a descriptor for Santa Claus or maybe even our dog who was getting a bit pudgy, but that’s about as far as it goes. No one calls anyone else fat. Especially because it’s so rarely true and has become just another derogatory name.

    My daughter was thin when she told me she was fat. At least by any reasonable adult standards. Sure she had a little bit of a belly, but she was also in middle school and I knew that’s where the negative body image was coming from. But no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t convince her that she had a beautiful body.

    She wanted to go on a diet.

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    Whether they're hitting the beach, laying out in the backyard, or going to the tanning salon, many people are hell-bent on getting bronzed, consequences be damned! What's more, it seems like the younger the sun-seeker, the more invincible they think they are to the damaging effects of ultraviolet rays. Teens are especially notorious -- and have pretty much always been! -- for thinking there's no need to worry about guarding against sun damage. But new research shows that tanning poses a serious cancer risk for them, too.

    Dartmouth researchers concluded that teens who indoor tan are especially vulnerable to developing basal cell carcinomas (BCC) at a young age, according to their study set to be published in the July 2014 issue of Pediatrics. Truly frightening!

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    Although sex ed in schools continues to be a hot topic of debate, how parents deal with the subject at home is a different story. Some moms have an open dialogue with their kids on the subject, while others prefer to stay mum until asked, and meanwhile, there are moms supplying their teens with condoms in an effort to encourage safe sex.

    One illustrated example: A photo of a note a mom supposedly (well, we're not 100 percent sure of its authenticity) wrote for her son, accompanied by a condom that she's encouraging him to use "if things get serious" when his girlfriend comes over. The pic has gone viral, and unsurprisingly, everyone has an opinion on just how advisable this is. Check it out ...

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    And in today's episode of Teenagers Do the Darndest Things, we have three teen boys who are going to cost taxpayers in Portland, Oregon major money: They trespassed and one decided to go and urinate in the city's reservoir. The fact that a young boy chose to relieve himself in a major, important body of water rather than, oh, I don't know, waiting and using a public toilet is reason enough to make you shake your head and wonder. Now consider the consequence of their actions: city officials are going to have to dump 38 million gallons of potentially contaminated drinking water thanks to their thoughtlessness.

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    I love hearing stories about siblings looking out for each other (it gives me hope for my own two boys!) but this kind of help is NOT what I usually have in mind. Matthew Robbins, a 32-year-old Pennsylvania man, was arrested last week and charged with endangering the welfare of a child (among other things) for “protecting” his 14-year-old sister by GIVING HER HEROIN.


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    A story went viral on Monday that had parents of teens worrying about something they thought they had outgrown -- fear of head lice. Commonly associated with younger children, a new “study” showed an increase in the amount of teens getting lice, and the blame was squarely pegged on the selfie phenomenon.

    The thinking was -- and I totally fell for this too, by the way -- that teens are contracting head lice at unprecedented rates because they’re so busy squeezing their heads together for group selfies to post on Instagram or Snapchat or wherever the hip place to post pics these days is.

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