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All About At-Risk Teens
The Real Deal

  • Today, 82 percent of new jobs demand a high school diploma.
  • If dropouts find a job, they are at a higher risk of losing it than those with a high school education. High school graduates are also more likely to find full-time jobs.
  • Studies indicate that while overall lethal drug abuse is down, the use of drugs such as marijuana and methamphedemine is up. Drinking and smoking rates among teens remain ominously high.
  • About 55 percent of teenagers live at poverty levels.
  • Use of LSD and other hallucinogens is on the rise.
    Emergency room visits have increased 85 percent for marijuana use, 96% for methamphedemine use, 58 percent for heroin use, and 19 percent for cocaine use.
  • Suicide among adolescents and young adults nearly tripled, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. From 2000 to 2007, suicide among American teens 15 to 19 years old rose 29 percent.
  • The suicide rate for children 10 to 14 years old has grown 120 percent.
  • The results of a survey of 16,000 high school students conducted by the Division of Adolescent and School Health found that 24.1 percent of them had seriously considered attempting suicide in the previous year, 19 percent had made a specific plan and 8.6 percent, or one in 12 students, had attempted suicide. Of those, 2.7 percent reported an attempt that required medical treatment.
  • Studies have found that depression and the risk of suicide might have biological as well as psychological causes. Some people who are depressed have altered levels of certain brain chemicals. For example, people who make violent suicide attempts have reduced amounts of the key brain chemical serotonin.
  • Teen’s account for one-fourth of all sexually transmitted diseases.
  • A teenage mother is more at risk of pregnancy complications such as premature or prolonged labor, anemia and high blood pressure. These risks are even greater for teens that are less than 15 years old.
  • Nearly 27 percent of all high school dropouts were pregnant.
  • The birth rate for young teens, ages 15 to 17, is steadily rising. The rate increased by 27 percent (from 30.5 to 38.7 per 1,000 women). Nearly four out of 100 girls, ages 15 to 19, were teenage mothers.
  • With an education cut short, a high school dropout may lack the job skills required to find and keep a job and could then become financially dependent on family members or welfare.
  • More than 50 percent of all teens have used alcohol and drugs more than once.
  • According to a survey conducted by the National Parents’ Resource Institute for Drug Education, more than a quarter of all high school seniors (26.5 percent) use an illicit drug once a month or more.
  • Teens who develop into stable young adults despite a troubled childhood or other adversity, in practically all cases, have had some caring figure or mentor as a constant in their lives.
  • The average high school senior will have watched more than 15,000 hours of television by the time he or she graduates.
  • Parents have the greatest influence upon young Americans.



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