One in ten women report having had sex against their will

woman lying down

This is the stark headline of the latest British National Survey of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles (NATSAL). It’s the first time this regular ten-year survey, now in its third cycle, has looked at non-volitional sex. They also report a huge range of data about the prevalence of sexual activities and attitudes.  So the Lifestyle Elf [read the full story…]

Passive smoking increases the risk of bacterial meningitis in children

NICE’s Eyes on Evidence newsletter reports on a meta-analysis of observational studies looking at the incidence of bacterial meningococcal disease in relation to exposure to passive smoking. Bacterial meningitis is rare, which makes it hard to study.  There are only 2 to 6 cases per 100,000 people in the UK every year, with a mortality [read the full story…]

Objective evidence that active kids do better at school

Children playing football

Recent studies have suggested that physical activity helps children to do better at their studies.  Some of these studies have been hampered by difficulties with reliably measuring the amount of activity that actually goes on.  Others have been limited by a short duration or small sample size.  And all have been hampered by the possible [read the full story…]

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The UK’s chlamydia mass media campaign encouraged high risk groups to get tested

Chlamydia is the most common sexually transmitted infection (STI) today in the United Kingdom, and sexually active young people (15 – 24) are most at risk.  It can be difficult to know if you have chlamydia as most people do not have symptoms, and if left untreated can lead to serious long-term health consequences including [read the full story…]

How can we get kids to be more active at school? New review highlights gaps

boy looking through hole in playground equipment

What do you remember about school break times? Did we fall into predictable groups, with boys playing football and girls walking round arm in arm, sharing gossip? It seems to me, looking back, that it was a time spent on the move, one way and another, and from a health perspective that was a Good [read the full story…]

How can we help parents keep their children safe from injury at home?

young dad kissing baby

We’ll wrap up our look at evidence on injuries this week with a move away from sports into the home. Not many of us run marathons, but we all run the risk of injury from everyday hazards and need to think how we can minimize the risks and keep ourselves and our families safe. So [read the full story…]

Schools can help to prevent kids starting smoking

“See you round the back of the bike shed at lunchtime?”  That was a familiar whisper from a rebellious bunch of elf maidens when I was at school.  To be followed by a lot of giggling and a smoke cloud rising up from the aforementioned bike shed just after the bell rang.  In those days [read the full story…]

If you view, will you do? This sex survey says…

teen girl on sofa with laptop

…well, what do you reckon? My guess is that you’d put your money on the answer being ‘yes’. Many people fear that today’s youth are getting to see sexually explicit material (SEM) of varieties and in ways which are a far cry from nicking your Dad’s copy of ‘Playboy’; that they’re seeing more, sooner, and [read the full story…]

How effective is a personality-targeted prevention program for adolescent alcohol misuse?

Prevention is better than cure, or so the old saying goes. So, following on with the alcohol theme this week I decided to turn our attention to alcohol abuse in young people. More specifically the idea that effective preventative intervention can involve more than just increasing adolescent knowledge about the harms of alcohol misuse. Research has [read the full story…]

Huge international study investigates asthma, eczema and diet in children and teens

“Fast food link to childhood asthma and eczema” hit the headlines yesterday and, whilst there were variations on this theme, I was glad to see that the word ‘link’ was there across the headlines. All too often, research which could only show an association between one thing and another is reported in news items as though [read the full story…]