Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Safe Driving Education Should Be Part Of Routine Teen Physicals, Experts Say

Date:
March 24, 2009
Source:
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions
Summary:
The "are you driving yet?" talk should become part of every pediatrician's regular physical exam for teenagers.

The "are you driving yet?" talk should become part of every pediatrician's regular physical exam for teenagers, Hopkins Children's experts say.

Related Articles


Pediatrician Letitia Dzirasa, M.D., notes that car accidents kill more 15- to -20-year-olds than any disease, so teenage driving should be considered a risky behavior, in need of as much attention as unprotected sex or underage drinking.

"Pediatricians talk to their teen patients about eating disorders, alcohol, marijuana use," Dzirasa says, "but the one conversation that is not happening often enough is about the number-one killer of teenagers: car accidents."

The American Academy of Pediatrics advises pediatricians to:

  • Ask 15-year-olds if they are applying for a driver's permit soon
  • Discuss driving risks and ask probing questions about driving behavior
  • Ask specific questions about medication use, use of alcohol, night-time driving, seatbelt use, use of a cell phone while driving.
  • Encourage parents to place driving restrictions on their teenagers, such as making sure the novice driver is accompanied by an adult.
  • Ask parents to consider a written contract with their children, establishing the rules of engagement and penalties for failure to follow them.
  • Remind teens and parents that many state laws restrict cell phone use and nighttime driving for novice drivers.

Dzirasa also urges pediatricians to learn about their state's driving laws and discuss them with both teens and parents. Maryland has a graduated driver's licensing (GDL) law that eases novice drivers into driving in three stages: learner's permit, provisional license and driver's license. Research shows that graduated licensing reduces both the number of accidents and the number of severe injuries, Dzirasa says. For example, one study showed that graduated licensing led to 35 percent fewer crashes that require hospitalizations among 16-year-olds. Other studies have shown that the crash rate among 16-year-olds dropped by 26 percent to 41 percent in the first year after the adoption of a graduated licensing law.

High-risk behaviors or conditions among teen drivers include:

  • Lack of experience
  • Non-use of seatbelts
  • Alcohol and other drug use
  • Common pediatric conditions, such as ADHD, that increase accident risk
  • Use of cell phones and audio equipment that distract drivers
  • Night-time driving
  • "It can't happen to me" syndrome, thinking that's typical of teenagers and youth.

In 2001 alone, 3,600 teens died in car accidents and 337,000 were injured, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. "Safe Driving Education Should Be Part Of Routine Teen Physicals, Experts Say." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 March 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090324171558.htm>.
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. (2009, March 24). Safe Driving Education Should Be Part Of Routine Teen Physicals, Experts Say. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090324171558.htm
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. "Safe Driving Education Should Be Part Of Routine Teen Physicals, Experts Say." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090324171558.htm (accessed October 25, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

Buzz60 (Oct. 24, 2014) IKEA is out with a new convertible desk that can convert from a sitting desk to a standing one with just the push of a button. Jen Markham explains. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

AFP (Oct. 24, 2014) A factory in China is busy making Ebola protective suits for healthcare workers and others fighting the spread of the virus. Duration: 00:38 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO: Millions of Ebola Vaccine Doses by 2015

WHO: Millions of Ebola Vaccine Doses by 2015

AP (Oct. 24, 2014) The World Health Organization said on Friday that millions of doses of two experimental Ebola vaccines could be ready for use in 2015 and five more experimental vaccines would start being tested in March. (Oct. 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor in NYC Quarantined With Ebola

Doctor in NYC Quarantined With Ebola

AP (Oct. 24, 2014) An emergency room doctor who recently returned to the city after treating Ebola patients in West Africa has tested positive for the virus. He's quarantined in a hospital. (Oct. 24) Video provided by AP
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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

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