Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Stress Fast Tracks Puberty, Researchers Say

Date:
October 19, 2006
Source:
BMJ Specialty Journals
Summary:
Stress, such as that brought on by parental separation and absentee fathers, fast tracks puberty, say researchers in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

Stress, such as that brought on by parental separation and absentee fathers, fast tracks puberty, say researchers in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

But the failure of politicians, teachers and often parents to acknowledge these physical and emotional changes only adds to teenagers' stress and leads to poor physical and mental health among this age group, they say.

The authors from Liverpool John Moores University Centre for Public Health, say that the onset of puberty has been steadily falling for the past 150 years, and has dropped three years within the past century alone, as a result of public health measures and improved nutrition.

But it is also due to stress, with parental separation/divorce and absentee fathers "one of the most effective stressors," they write. Rates of divorce and single parenthood have rapidly increased in many countries, they say.

But despite the younger age at which children reach puberty, there have been no attempts to develop young people faster, "leaving an increasing gap between physical puberty [changes to their bodies] and social puberty [when they are able to make decisions for themselves]," they write.

"The results can be ill informed health damaging behaviour," they say, including unprotected sex, substance abuse, self harm, violence and bullying, with disadvantaged communities likely to hit the hardest.

While society in general might prefer to ignore earlier puberty, the commercial sector certainly has not, drawing heavily on sexual imagery in their marketing to young teens, say the authors.

"Such marketing is more likely to reinforce the confusion caused by separated physical and social puberty rather than providing the information necessary to deal with it," they write.

"In the short term, responding to earlier puberty means moving away from societal attitudes that equate protecting children with regarding them as firmly ensconced in childhood long after their physical journey into adulthood has begun," contend the authors.

"Such pretence, however well intentioned, simply denies them the vital information they require to complete this transition without damaging their health," they conclude.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BMJ Specialty Journals. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

BMJ Specialty Journals. "Stress Fast Tracks Puberty, Researchers Say." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 October 2006. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/10/061019094213.htm>.
BMJ Specialty Journals. (2006, October 19). Stress Fast Tracks Puberty, Researchers Say. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/10/061019094213.htm
BMJ Specialty Journals. "Stress Fast Tracks Puberty, Researchers Say." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/10/061019094213.htm (accessed July 28, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Monday, July 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

AP (July 28, 2014) Classes are being offered nationwide to encourage African Americans to learn about cooking fresh foods based on traditional African cuisine. The program is trying to combat obesity, heart disease and other ailments often linked to diet. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
West Africa Gripped by Deadly Ebola Outbreak

West Africa Gripped by Deadly Ebola Outbreak

AFP (July 28, 2014) The worst-ever outbreak of the deadly Ebola epidemic grips west Africa, killing hundreds. Duration: 00:48 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Trees Could Save More Than 850 Lives Each Year

Trees Could Save More Than 850 Lives Each Year

Newsy (July 27, 2014) A national study conducted by the USDA Forest Service found that trees collectively save more than 850 lives on an annual basis. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Google's Next Frontier: The Human Body

Google's Next Frontier: The Human Body

Newsy (July 27, 2014) Google is collecting genetic and molecular information to paint a picture of the perfectly healthy human. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins