- 2020Feb 20
*The following is excerpted from an online article posted on NPR.
Efforts to stem the tide of teen vaping seem to be a step behind the market. By the time Juul pulled most of its flavored pods from the market in October of 2019, many teens had already moved on to an array of newer, disposable vape products.
"Juul is almost old school ... It's no longer the teen favorite," says Meredith Berkman, co-founder of the advocacy group PAVE, Parents Against Vaping E-cigarettes.
"Among the disposables [that] are most popular, there's Puff Bar, there's Stig, there's Viigo," Berkman says. They're designed for one-time use. Then, they're tossed, she explains. "These have just flooded the market," Berkman says.
These products are flourishing despite the Trump administration's partial ban on flavored e-cigarettes, announced in January and in effect as of February 5. The enforcement guidance issued by the Food and Drug Administration was aimed at stopping young people from vaping. It focused on enforcement on flavored cartridges, like Juul's popular products.
But it left open some "loopholes," says Matt Myers of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. "It won't take the kids and it hasn't taken the kids any time to make a switch [to newer products]."
At any time, the FDA could crackdown on the new disposables. The agency has enforcement discretion to take action and in the guidance, the agency specified it could take action on any e-cigarette product that's "targeted to minors."
- 2020Feb 19
*The following is excerpted from an online article posted on ScienceDaily.
Children's average daily time spent watching television or using a computer or mobile device increased from 53 minutes at age 12 months to more than 150 minutes at 3 years, according to an analysis by researchers at the National Institutes of Health, the University at Albany and the New York University Langone Medical Center. By age 8, children were more likely to log the highest amount of screen time if they had been in home-based childcare or were born to first-time mothers. The study appears in JAMA Pediatrics.
"Our results indicate that screen habits begin early," said Edwina Yeung, Ph.D., the study's senior author, and an investigator in the Epidemiology Branch of NIH's Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD). "This finding suggests that interventions to reduce screen time could have a better chance of success if introduced early."
Mothers of nearly 4,000 children who took part in the study responded to questions on their kids' media habits when they were 12, 18, 24, 30, and 36 months of age. They also responded to similar questions when the children were 7 and 8 years old. The study compiled additional demographic information on the mothers and children from birth records and other surveys.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends avoiding digital media exposure for children under 18 months of age, introducing children 18 to 24 months of age to screen media slowly, and limiting screen time to an hour a day for children from 2 to 5 years of age. In the current study, researchers found that 87% of the children had screen time exceeding these recommendations. However, while screen time increased throughout toddlerhood, by age 7 and 8, screen time fell to under 1.5 hours per day. The researchers believe this decrease relates to time consumed by school-related activities.
- 2020Feb 18
*The following is excerpted from an online article posted on HealthDay.
More than a quarter of all opioid overdoses in the United States involve teenagers, and a full fifth of those cases were likely suicide attempts, new research shows.
The findings follow an in-depth analysis of nearly 754,000 American opioid poisoning cases that occurred between 2005 and 2018. All had been reported to the U.S. National Poison Data System. And almost 208,000 of those cases involved children 18 years old or younger.
During the 13-year study period, the pediatric overdose landscape has taken a turn for the worse, said study author Dr. Megan Land, a pediatric critical care fellow at Emory University's School of Medicine in Atlanta.
Most significantly, said Land, "the proportion of children with suspected suicide due to opioid poisoning increased dramatically over our study period," rising from just under 14% in 2005 to more than 21% by 2018. That increase, she said, "echoes findings in recent studies demonstrating that the incidence and rate of pediatric suicide attempts by [opioid] poisonings has been rising since 2011."
The study also found that during the same period, the percentage of young patients admitted to a critical care unit following an opioid overdose rose from 6.6% to 9.6%.
Similarly, by 2018 the risk that a young overdose patient would end up in life-threatening situations and/or end up with a major disability or disfigurement ticked up from .10% to .13%. And the risk that a young person would die from an overdose also rose, from .18% in 2005 to .28% in 2018.
On a more positive note, Land observed that as a percentage of all cases, pediatric opioid overdose cases peaked in 2010. Since that time, the trend has been heading in a downward direction.
Land and her colleagues are to present their findings this week at a meeting of the Society of Critical Care Medicine, in Orlando, Fla. Such research is considered preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed journal.