Teens in Canada: Sex, contraception, pregnancy and STDs

Are Canadian teens having sex?

Of course they are!

CondomThe latest available StatsCan report about sex, condom-use and STDs among young people in Canada was published in 2005. The study looked at youth aged 15 to 25, finding that about 62% of young people in this age category had had sex at least once in their lives. The proportion was the same among males and females, and once they began sexual activity most remained sexually active.

Of course, the older the young people were the more likely they were to have had sex: 28% of 15-17 year-olds stated they were sexually active, compared to 65% of 18-19 year-olds and 80% of 20-24 year olds. The average age at first sexual intercourse for both males and females was 16.5 years. The survey found that older people were more likely to have long-term, monogamous relationships and that youth aged 15 to 19 were more likely to have had multiple partners in the past year.

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Alzheimer’s disease: What is it and can it be prevented?

© Flowers Florist Link 2009 By J.O.E. Innovations.This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.5 License. First described in 1906 by German psychologist Alois Alzheimer, Alzheimer’s disease is incurable, degenerative and fatal. It attacks the brain and it is the most common cause of dementia. It is most commonly diagnosed in people over 65, although early-onset Alzheimer’s can occur much earlier.

Prevalence

Over 300,000 Canadians suffer from some type of dementia, over 60% of these have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease (source). The government estimates that, by the year 2031 — when most Baby Boomers will reach 60 — over 750,000 Canadians will suffer from dementia. (more Canadian statistics)

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Post-holiday blues

The holidays are over for another year and we are all back to our everyday routines: guests have left, get-togethers are over, and the cold, bleak, very long winter stretches Depression Jessia Hime Nov17_2008before us with no respite until (for some) Family Day in February. And even THEN it’s not over!

Feeling a little blue? That is very common this time of year. Shorter days, colder temperatures, post-holiday financial debt… January is a hard month for many people.

Positive steps

  • Exercise (help shed those festive pounds you might regret in the cold light of January)
  • Eat well
  • Volunteer (helping others makes us feel better about ourselves)
  • Learn something new Continue reading

CAM and stress: Can CAM help you cope with stress?

[See original post.]

Stress is not necessarily a negative thing: it can push you to perform better and faster than you might normally have done, leaving you with a great feeling of accomplishment. In dangerous situations, it may even extend your life. At least one study even suggests that a small amount of short-term (“acute”) stress may help boost your immune system!

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Over a third of Americans use CAM therapies

[See original post.]

According to a US government survey released this month, approximately 38% of US adults and 12% of US children used CAM therapies in 2007.

CAM use by U.S. adults and children: in 2002, 36% of adults used CAM. In 2007, that number increased to 38.3%, while 11.8% of children used it.This 2007 survey marks the first time the National Institutes of Health have collected statistics about CAM usage among children, 1 in 9 of whom use CAM therapies. It is a rich source of information about how Americans use CAM therapies and why they use them.

The 24-page report is available for download at:

Barnes PM, Bloom B, Nahin R. CDC National Health Statistics Report #12. Complementary and Alternative Medicine Use Among Adults and Children: United States, 2007. December 10, 2008.

While the 2007 report reveals that overall use of CAM therapies among adults is similar to the 2002 data, use of some specific CAM therapies (such as deep breathing, meditation, massage therapy, and yoga) has increased significantly.

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‘Tis the season: Can holiday stress affect your health?

It seems as though stress is an unavoidable part of modern life, particularly at this time of year, and this year in particular. You, your friends, family, co-workers and neighbours may be coping with stress on a daily or even hourly basis.

What is stress?
Stress is your body’s way of reacting to the demands of the world. The stress response is sometimes called the “fight or flight” response.

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HIV and AIDS: What they are and how to avoid them

PLEASE NOTE: THIS POST WAS WRITTEN IN 2008. SINCE THEN, MANY THINGS IN THIS FIELD HAVE CHANGED. WHILE THIS INFORMATION WAS RELIABLE AT THE TIME, IT MAY NO LONGER BE SO. IF YOU ARE SEARCHING FOR HEALTH INFORMATION ON HIV/AIDS IN PARTICULAR, PLEASE CONSULT A RELIABLE RESOURCE WRITTEN IN THE PAST YEAR OR TWO. THIS POST HAS BEEN PRESERVED AS A WRITING SAMPLE ONLY.

This December 1 marks the 20th World AIDS day. On this day, people from around the world come together to draw attention to this global pandemic and to encourage HIV and AIDS prevention. A primary focus for this day is to encourage progress in HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment and care in high prevalence countries and around the world.

What is HIV/AIDS?
HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) is a type of virus that attacks our immune system, causing it to function less well or not at all. In the early stages of infection (the first 5 to 10 years), there are often no obvious symptoms: many infected people do not know they are infected. However, as the virus continues to attack the immune system, the infected person starts to get sick. This is because all kinds of “opportunistic infections”, which their bodies would have normally fought off, attack their weakened immune system. (source)

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Crohn’s disease, colitis and irritable bowel syndrome: What is the difference?

November is Crohn’s & Colitis Awareness Month. Both diseases are types of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), which can involve either or both the small and large bowel.

Crohn’s disease occurs mainly in the large intestine (colon) and in a part of the small intestine called the ileum. It is not usually fatal, but there is no definitive cure. Medications and a good diet go a long way to controlling the symptoms of this disease. Unlike ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s can’t be completely cured by surgery.
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Diabetes and obesity: more than a casual link…

Over two million Canadians are known to have diabetes. In Ontario, nearly 9% of the population – about 850,000 people – have diabetes. In Toronto alone, over 225 000 residents are diabetic. An additional 5.8 million Canadians are considered ‘pre-diabetic’. (source)

Correspondingly or coincidentally, excess body weight and obesity – known risk factors for type 2 diabetes – have been steadily on the rise, taking on epidemic proportions. Is there a link?
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Cold and influenza season: preventing and coping with colds and flus

What are colds and flu?
A cold is a highly contagious viral infection that last about a week, but may last as long as two weeks.  Symptoms of a cold can include: sore throat, runny nose, nasal congestion, sneezing and cough. Sometimes, a cold may also cause conjunctivitis (“pink eye”), muscle aches, fatigue, malaise, headaches, muscle weakness, and loss of appetite. Rhinoviruses cause most common colds, although other viruses can cause them as well. Colds usually last about a week, but symptoms may last for as long as two weeks.
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