Health Awareness In The New Age

Teenage is a very traumatic period for the children as well as for the parents. This is a tender age when the teenage boys and girls go through puberty and the life changes for them. Actually this period is the most beautiful period for they now begin to see the changes in their physical body as well as mental makeup. They begin to understand that they are growing up and are not children any more. In fact most of them begin to think that they are already adults. The external world and the opposite sex matter the most in their view at this point of time.

This is a very delicate age because the children just begin to recognize their sexuality at this point of time and hormones work overtime. In wanting to explore their new found identity and sexuality as well as to prove to others that they are adults, they tend to indulge in partying, dating, smoking and drinking etc. This happens to be one of the most dangerous periods as well for, the mistakes made at this stage in life can turn out to be costly mistakes. Parents are therefore naturally worried about their wards until such time that the child grows up and becomes a mature adult knowing what one is getting into.

It is not that only the parents of girl child are worried. The parents of boys are more worried as the boys are generally difficult to control. Little do they know the health hazards of smoking, drinking and drug abuse. These habits are addictive and can turn out to be long lasting habits where the boys lose control over their habits. Teenage boys at this age do not know that smoking can cause cancer and drinking can damage their liver. They are simply not in a position to imagine the effects of their actions.

Though schools do conduct health education and sex education classes to children, the same may not be adequate or in line with the challenges faced by boys today. Apart from the fear of children succumbing to these habits, the parents today are more worried about the phenomenon of 'Coming Out' that is fast gaining ground amongst teenagers.

'Coming Out' refers to the process of coming to terms with and identifying your sexuality. The number of gay men is increasing in the society. It is not easy for gay men to lead a normal life. Even if they do openly admit their sexual orientation, there will always be a lot of internal turmoil and anxiety that they are likely to go through besides having to be aware of the reactions of other people in the family and society. Along with the process of understanding one's sexual orientation and dealing with it, they have also got to consider the health risks that accompany their life. HIV and STD pose a major health risk to these men and women who are gay, lesbian, hetro sexual or transgender etc. Apart from the risk to physical health, they are also likely to need psychiatric counseling and therapy in many cases.

Health awareness amongst these target groups have got to be increased through sustained effort. It is only through building awareness that these men can be taught to manage their health and lead a healthy life.