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The parents' guide to what's in this website.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this educational site was developed by the U.K.'s National Health Service. Designed for ages 12-15, it features a "test" that helps visitors assess how healthy they are when it comes to emotions, nutrition, family life, sexuality, substance use, and more. Generally, the site offers solid information and advice about making good choices, but parents may want to review the Alcohol and Safe Sex sections because the U.S. and U.K. have different laws about teen drinking and teen sex -- and because parents' opinions on the "best answer" to a question may not be the same as the site's.
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Is it any good?
Teen LifeCheck takes a comprehensive "whole life" approach that tackles issues like crime, friendship, and attitudes about school -- topics that are frequently overlooked by adolescent health sites. The smartly designed site will keep teens engaged as they're learning helpful tips about getting -- and staying -- healthy. After users complete the quiz, they'll find out where they can go for support or additional information. Some of that information is specific to the U.K. and won't be useful for American teens, but the tips and the goal-setting feature are helpful regardless of a visitor's location.
Talk to your kids about ...
Why do some people smoke cigarettes and abuse alcohol and other drugs? Why would people do something that's harmful to their bodies and minds? How might messages from the media influence their decisions?
Families can talk about how communicating about feelings is an important part of being emotionally healthy. What are some healthy ways to express yourself when you're feeling angry or sad? Who can you talk to when you need help with a problem?
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