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Adolescence & Youth

A Parent’s Role in Substance Use Prevention: Tips for Talking to Youth of All Ages

Youth are less likely to use addictive substances if their parents talk early and often about the risks, establish clear rules and consequences, and regularly monitor their activities. Active involvement and support of caring adults are both critical in the prevention of youth substance abuse. Tips for how to start the conversation, integrate positive communication, and respond to children at every age are provided in this publication.

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Adolescent Prescription and Over-the-counter Drug Abuse: The Truth About Abusing Over-the-counter and Prescription Medications

Prescription and over-the-counter drug abuse and overdose are growing concerns across the nation and in North Dakota communities. In North Dakota, there has been a 59.7% increase in the number of controlled substance prescriptions dispensed between 2008 and 2015. Staying up-to-date on prescription and over-the-counter drug abuse trends is critical for today's caring adults.

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Is Your Playground Safe for Kids?

We want our kids to “play hard,” but we want them to play safely, too. Parents and caregivers need to be aware of potential safety issues and what a properly maintained playground looks like. This publication provides information about surfacing materials and safety standards.

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References and Resources for Addressing Youth Issues

Numerous youth issues are highlighted in this single publication. Each topic area includes a list of current references and resources specifically focusing on the particular youth issue. Included are websites, NDSU Extension publications and programs, brochures, lesson guides, fact sheets, videos and more. Each reference and resource is followed by a short description.

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Safe Food for Babies and Children: Choking Dangers

Every child is at risk of choking: Older infants and children less than 5 years old easily can choke on food, toys and household objects. A single choking incident may result in death, permanent brain damage due to lack of oxygen and other complications associated with airway blockage. This publication provides tips on choking prevention.

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Talking to Children About Armed Conflict

Whenever stories about armed conflict, terrorism or the possibility of war appear on television or in the news, considering the possible reactions of children and youth is important. Such topics quickly become a focus and concern for children. Addressing children's reactions is especially important when the issues directly relate to their family life, such as deployment of a parent for military service.

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Talking to Children About Divorce

Divorce can be a challenging and painful transition that children experience differently than adults. The distress of the parents involved in a divorce can interfere with their ability to respond to their children and their children’s needs. However, parents and caregivers can find the tools they need to help themselves and their children through the difficult transition of divorce.

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Talking to Children About Sexual Abuse

Sexual abuse is among the most serious issues that face children and youth today. The specter of child sexual abuse is frightening to parents and caring adults. Sexual abuse steals so much from children, robbing them of trust, innocence and security. Addressing the problem of child sexual abuse directly and responsibly is important to fostering appropriate awareness of this difficult topic.

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Talking to Children About Terrorism

Children may experience strong emotions when faced with mass violence or terrorist acts either on television or in the news. This publication helps parents and adults find ways to support children through kindness, understanding and reassurance.

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Teens and Cellphones: A Guide for Teachers

The widespread use of cell phones by teenagers raises the concern of the negative effects it could have on their performance in school. However, teachers can work with their students to incorporate effective cell phone use into the classroom. When used appropriately, cell phones can enhance class participation and allow students to access current information.

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Teens and Digital Devices: A Guide for Parents

Digital devices play an important role in the daily lives of teens. While they do offer many benefits, they can also expose teens to cyberbullying and other harmful effects that can be detrimental to a teen's health and overall development. Parents should be actively involved in their teens' lives and educate themselves about digital devices and social media so they can provide adequate support.

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Teens and Vaping: What Caring Adults Should Know About Electronic Cigarette Use

Rates of e-cigarette use among teens are increasing at an alarming rate. Many teens are unaware of the physical and psychological risks that are associated with vaping. Additionally, adults are unaware of the overall prevalence of vaping among youth. It is important that they are informed of what vaping is, what the effects are, and how to recognize the signs to lessen the use of vapes.

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Understanding and Working With Youth

Certain characteristics are common to youth at each age level. While the rate of development of youth may vary, the order of the stages does not. Each of the four stages is distinct, characterized by abilities and attitudes that are different from the stages before and after. Within each developmental stage, there are four areas of development impacting individual learning.

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