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Dr. Drew

Driven by current events, "Dr. Drew" on HLN focuses on the human - and human behavior - at the center of the story.

Smartphones causing rise in risky teen sex?

  • 47-percent of teens surveyed admitted to being sexually active
  • Smartphones likely aren't directly causing risky teen sex, researcher says
Smartphones causing rise in risky teen sex?

A new study suggests that teens with a smartphone may be at a higher risk of engaging in risky sex behavior.

The research was presented last week during the annual meeting of the America Public Health Association.

As reported in MyHealthNewsDaily, the study involved nearly 2,000 Los Angeles Unified School District high-school students, in which 71 percent identified themselves as Hispanic or Latino.

Of those teens who owned a smartphone, 47-percent admitted to being sexually active, compared to the 35 percent that did not have a smartphone.

Study researcher Eric Rice of the University of Southern California's School of Social Work in Los Angeles told the site that smartphones likely aren't directly causing risky teen sex, rather, smartphones may make it easier for teens to arrange sexual encounters.

He also noted that sex education programs should begin to include the risks of seeking sex online as well as having parents use this opportunity to start a dialogue with their teen about their sexual well-being.

The researchers hope to have their study published in a scientific journal.

Read the full report here.

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