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5 great reasons students should play sports

Many kids are introduced to sports at an early age. Though young children may enjoy the recreational aspect of playing sports, a serious passion for a particular sport may develop as children reach high school. Such passions can be encouraged, as participating in sports can be highly beneficial for young people.

1. Learn resilience: Compared to generations past, when children may have had jobs during the school year, today's children do not have many demands placed on them beyond schoolwork and maybe some light chores around the house. The average student may use sports as a way to learn about and overcome challenges. Participating in sports can teach kids how to recover from setbacks (being the losing team) or dealing with adverse situations (sports-related injuries).

2. Improve fitness: School sports require ongoing physical activity, which is advantageous to children in an age when lifestyles are increasingly sedentary. A report from the National Federation of State High School Associations found that when female students are given more opportunity to engage in athletics in high school, their weight and body mass improve. School sports can help students overcome the negatives of sedentary lifestyles.

3. Relieve stress: Exercise in any shape or form can help relieve stress. The camaraderie that develops within a team setting also can boost self-esteem and help some students overcome any feelings of isolation they may confront during adolescence.

4. Boost brainpower: School sports may work the body but they also benefit the brain. A report from the Institute of Medicine indicates children who are physically active show greater attention, have faster cognitive processing speed and perform better on academic tests than those who are sedentary.

5. Develop confidence and leadership skills: A study from Cornell University says teens who played sports developed stronger leadership skills and developed better confidence. That can work in a team or solitary setting, and translate into skills that serve a person well throughout life.




 


Signs of ADHD in people of all ages

Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder affects millions of people. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that a 2016 survey of parents found that 6.1 million children, which equated to roughly 9.4 percent of the childhood population that year, had been diagnosed with ADHD.

ADHD does not just affect children. A 10-year study published in JAMA Network Open found that ADHD diagnoses among adults have been growing four times faster than those among children in the United States.

The health and wellness information site Healthline says ADHD is a complex neurodevelopmental disorder that can affect various components of daily life. The Mayo Clinic reports that ADHD can cause persistent problems, such as difficulty paying attention, hyperactivity and impulsive behavior, in both adults and children. ADHD can affect relationships, academic performance and even people's careers.

People concerned about ADHD should know that there is no single test to diagnose it. Furthermore, other psychiatric conditions or learning disabilities can produce similar symptoms as ADHD. Health care providers use the guidelines in the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, Fifth edition (DSM-5) to help diagnose ADHD. Key criteria for the condition include six or more symptoms for children and five or more for those ages 17 and older. Some of those symptoms include:

• Inattention, which includes not holding attention on tasks or play activities. Failure to pay close attention to details or making careless mistakes. Often the person has trouble organizing tasks and activities.

• Hyperactivity that can affect the ability to take part in activities quietly. One may act as if driven by a motor, and often squirms or fidgets. A person may have trouble waiting turns or keeping emotions in check.

• Impulsivity which can mean talking excessively or blurting out an answer before a question has been completed. Adults may have a hot temper or low frustration tolerance. Impulsivity can lead to risky behavior or substance and alcohol misuse.

• Daydreaming can occur as well, as not all symptoms of ADHD include loudness and being rambunctious. Some people may disappear into themselves and be quieter and less involved than they once were.

ADHD is a medical condition that is being diagnosed more readily, helping adults and children get treatment that can help them lead full lives.




Over 1/3 of child injuries occur at home

According to KidsHealth.org, more than one-third of child injuries and deaths happen at home. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notes that most incidents at home occur where there is water, such as in the bathroom or kitchen; heat or flame, like in the kitchen or around the grill; toxic substances, like those found in medicine cabinets or beneath kitchen sinks; and in places where kids can fall, such as on staircases.

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