There's a new STD being spread by teenagers. Symptoms include lowered heads, twitchy thumbs and dirty, dirty thoughts.
The name of this new plague? Sexting.
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Of course, sexting is nothing new, but its rise among young girls is causing some alarm. A recent study published in the Archives of Pediatric & Adolescent Medicine revealed that more than one in four teenagers in Texas had sent naked photos of themselves. In addition, one-third of those teens had asked to be sent a nude shot via text.
To find these numbers, researchers from the University of Texas studied nearly 1,000 students aged 14-19, all from seven southeast Texas high schools.
Some shocking (and not-so-shocking) correlations can be gleaned from the results. For instance, it's no surprise that teen girls who frequently sent and received sexts were more likely to have started dating and having actual sex. These sexters were also more likely to have used drugs and alcohol.
Male teens were also more likely to have had sex if they were frequent sexters; however, no association with substance abuse was found.
The good news: Although about one-quarter of those surveyed had sent a nude photo, most of the girls and boys who participated in the study were "bothered" by the thought, which means not all teens have been cursed with the sexting sickness. It also means that even those who don't like the idea of sexting are succumbing to peer pressure.
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What are your thoughts on sexting among teens?
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