Teen Teen Health

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    Listen up, parents! If you've ever wanted to know whether or not your teen is smuggling some illegal substances in the house or want to track down your child's stash, here's your chance. You can now hire a drug sniffing dog to visit your home and uncover any narcotics that might be hidden.

    Ron Robichaud, a former dog trainer and the founder of Discreet Intervention, is making headlines this week for his offer to come to your home with his trusted dog, Ben, to locate drugs your child may be hiding. Just prepare yourself for what Ben might find.

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    I write this post knowing full well I'm going to take a lot of heat for it. That plenty of more forgiving folks are going to remind me that a child of 14 or 15 doesn't think about the consequences of his actions. That, in this technologically advanced age, it's impossible to predict how far a viral video will travel. That kids will be kids and kids will always make fun of other kids and parents need to just deal with it and teach their children to toughen up.

    But those excuses are the reason why we continue to hear heartbreaking stories like this one. They are the reason why a 14-year-old boy named Matthew Burdette chose to kill himself rather than deal with the humiliation of being a laughing stock -- not just at his school, but at schools all over California -- after an embarrassing video of him that another classmate filmed in secret spread like wildfire.

    There's one person to blame for this, and teen or not, he deserves to be punished to the full extent the law allows.

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    A 16-year-old boy died this weekend in California after doing something a lot of other teens probably wouldn't think twice about: standing on a bus.

    Mason Zisette was just one of several teens under the age of 18 who was traveling with adult chaperones on a double-decker Starline Tours bus that had been chartered to attend a private birthday party for one of the young passengers at a venue south of Manhattan Beach. As the bus made its way down the San Diego Freeway at 45 miles per hour, Zisette -- who was seated on the roofless top deck -- reportedly stood up on his seat to dance. He was facing the opposite direction of the freeway signs and had no idea what horrible thing was about to happen.

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    There is no greater grief or horror for parents than the loss of a child. But one musical therapist at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center is helping parents cope with their loss by commemorating their children in song. Brian Schreck, who has been working with parents and their sick children, records the child's heartbeat and later sets it to their favorite music, leaving their parents with a beautiful tune that they can enjoy forever.

    The lovely beat of the heart, set alongside a calm composition, is a simple melody, but one that parents will appreciate. Margaret and Jeremy Bennett lost their son, Dylan, earlier this year. Schreck recorded Dylan's heartbeat while he was in the intensive care unit and later gifted the parents with the music:

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    The story you're about to read probably isn't going to shock you because it may sound far too familiar -- and that fact alone says something pretty frightening about our society. A 16-year-old girl from North Carolina reportedly hid her entire pregnancy from her parents, gave birth in her home -- again, under everyone's noses -- and then buried the baby girl in the backyard.

    The details of this case are still emerging and some facts, including whether the baby was born alive or not, are unclear. But if your feelings for this teen border on sadness more than anger, you're not alone.

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    Not so long ago, coffee was strictly an adults-only beverage -- one most kids and teens wouldn't touch with a 10-foot pole. But thanks to the abundance of super-sweet caffeine drinks, energy drinks, and sodas sold at markets, gas stations, and trendy cafes, more young people are finding it pretty tempting to down 1 or 10 cold and frothy mocha drinks.

    We can't blame them -- these drinks taste like dessert and are extremely appealing to young taste buds. But given their popularity and sweetness, it's sometimes easy to forget that the caffeine contained in these treats is bad for our kids' health. And, according to a recent study, the effect of caffeine is even worse for boys.

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    Who hasn't fantasized about having a twin sister who reads your mind and is always there for you? This sweet story proves that twins have a special bond that can't be broken. Chloe Gruenke was participating in the Illinois state-level 800-meter dash when she felt a sudden pop and pull in her thigh and fell to the ground. The 13-year-old had a guardian angel though -- her twin sis Claire, who flocked to her side on the track and did the most amazing thing.

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    Most parents would be completely thrilled if their child got into just ONE Ivy League college. That, for many, would be a huge deal. Now, what would you do if your child was accepted at not one Ivy League school but all eight of them? That's just what happened to Kwasi Enin, a New York high school senior. So, how did this happen?

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    As a former smoker, I am well-aware that smoking is bad for you. That's why I'm a former smoker. In fact, I think it's safe to say that the no smoking movement has been successful enough in their campaigns that even folks still puffing away KNOW that smoking is bad for them.

    But it's also totally addictive. And the marketing of those delicious and deadly sticks is totally pernicious. That marketing is still a hot-button issue, especially when it comes to groups who are at higher risk for addiction, you know, like teenagers.

    A new study released charges tobacco companies with the crime of deliberately marketing their products to the more easily influenced teenage demographic. It's not shocking, but it's one more reason why talking to your teens about smoking is absolutely necessary. That doesn't make it feel any less lame, though.

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    Parents who take their children for "annuals" at the pediatrician's office -- is this even a common thing anymore? -- might be shocked to learn that their family doctor is about to give the classic wellness visit a serious upgrade. Whether or not they are at risk for high cholesterol, children between the ages of 9 and 11 will receive cholesterol tests because doctors believe these can reduce the chance that they will suffer from heart disease later on in life, according to new guidelines published this week by the American Academy of Pediatrics. If high cholesterol levels are detected in young children, docs say they can use preventive measures, like making recommendations on how they can change their diets and incorporate more exercise into their lives, in an effort to stop a major problem before it starts. And cholesterol screenings aren't the only change you can expect.

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