Young Adults: Relationships and Health (cont.)

Moderator: Do you think schools are doing their job in educating teenagers about drugs and sex? What could they be doing better?

Dr. Drew: I think schools are really struggling with this. I think they know the nature of the problem and extent of it. I'd advocate dealing with the reality. Don't pretend the horse is not out of the barn or that it'll get better. I suggest they use more teen counseling type models, but the schools are struggling. Anywhere political issues enter into what kids need, it ill serves their health.

wkennedy_WebMD Is there any health concerns regarding anal sex?

Dr. Drew: Well, obviously the STD issues, you want to be sure you're wearing a condom ... it's the most efficient way to transmit a virus. You can induce the anal problems of hemorrhoids, etc. I have to say, though, that is one topic that has become suddenly routine in talking to young people. And, I don't know if it's them trying to up the ante or an expression of some innate aggression, it sounds like some very aggressive act that they're interested in engaging in without any concern for the partner.

Moderator: What do you think the dangers are - emotionally and physically regarding abortion?

Dr. Drew: Well, the physical dangers are small but obvious, like infection, bleeding, anesthesia. I think the psychological issues are not discussed enough. I talk to women all the time about this, they're led into like it's a procedure, it's no big deal, it's sold to them. Yet, on the other side of it, they feel awful. There's probably some biological event from going to the pregnant to the non-pregnant state .. some sense of loss, and the cognitive sense of a life was lost or removed, and then guilt and shame. And, most women are not given ways to deal with this. Talk to any woman who's had an abortion ten years later, they still tear up. It affects people much more than they're willing to talk about. Yes, I think too many women are having abortions these days. And, I think it's being looked at as birth control, which is atrocious.

Moderator: What, in your estimation, is the overall state of health of America's youth, both physically and emotionally?

Dr. Drew: I think I alluded to that earlier. There's a piece of the population for whom things look remarkably good, I'm completely impressed with these kids. But at the same time, there is a group that has a negative slope and that is the fractured family, the abandoned qualities, the abusive nature of their personal world, and if they want to solve that interpersonally, those same relationships form in their young adulthood.

Madief_WebMD What resources do you feel are available to young adults suffering from clinical depression?

Dr. Drew: Tons of resources! I wrote a book on depression called 'Restoring Intimacy' and the proceeds from that are going to NDMDA ... they are wonderful. They will help you find resources in your area if you have issues with payment. If you have resources, start with your physician, there is an army out there of people out there who are well equipped to help with depression. And, you can go to my website www.doctordrew.com. And, the National Depressive and Manic Depressive Association is a site we like. It's an area in Dr. Drew's Office on the site. We reference them.

Moderator: Dr. Drew, thank you for joining us. Please join us again next Friday at 9 p.m. EST here in the Sexual Health Auditorium when we discuss The Latest Advances In Testing For Cervical Cancer, with Dr. Juan Felix.

Dr. Drew: My pleasure! I would love to come back. 'Hope to see you soon.

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