Health Notes: Teen health in MinnesotaMinnesota teens are healthier than they used to be, but a “wellness gap” separates white from minority adolescents in the state.
By: John Lundy, Duluth News Tribune
Minnesota teens are healthier than they used to be, but a “wellness gap” separates white from minority adolescents in the state.
Those were the overall findings of an analysis by the Minnesota Department of Health, a department news release said.
Minnesotans ages 12 to 19 are less likely to smoke cigarettes, binge drink, engage in sexual activity, hit or beat up another person, carry a weapon on school property, drink soft drinks or ride in a car without a seat belt now than the same age group did in the 1990s.
The findings were reported in health department’s “The Health and Well-Being of Minnesota’s Adolescents of Color and American Indians: A Data Book.”
But while the number of American Indian and adolescents of color in Minnesota has doubled since 1990, teens in those categories have lagged in most health categories, the news release said.
One area of improvement for all races is in teen pregnancy, the news release said. In fact, the largest decline was among black teens, where the birth rate fell from 169 per thousand in 1992 to 64 per thousand in 2009.
Details of the report, “The Health and Well-Being of Minnesota’s Adolescents of Color and American Indians: A Data Book,” are available online at www.health.state.mn.us/divs/chs/mss.