Health Issues in the Homeless Youth Population

Pediatric Annals (Impact Factor: 0.61). 04/2012; 41(4):154-6. DOI: 10.3928/00904481-20120307-12
Source: PubMed

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    ABSTRACT: Substance use disorders and eating disorders can lead to unhealthy eating and malnutrition that is associated with varying degrees of medical morbidity and increased risk of death. Vitamin and mineral deficiencies are most common in patients with anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and alcohol use disorders but can be seen in other substance use disorders as well. These disorders may share some underlying pathophysiology and can co-occur, which further increases the risk of malnutrition. The specific nutritional deficits in eating disorders and substance use disorders, their clinical (especially neurological) manifestations, how commonly they occur, and their mechanisms of action will be discussed in this chapter.
    No preview · Article · Nov 2013
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    ABSTRACT: An estimated 2.5 million youth, ages 16-24, experience homelessness in the US each year. These young individuals, particularly women, are considered high-risk for serious health problems, including HIV, STDs, teen pregnancy and teen dating violence. Healthcare providers can play a critical role in providing appropriate care to homeless youth and in linking them to other health services. Research suggests that linking healthcare with other services needed by homeless adolescents, such as shelter or food, may help improve their continuity of care. In this paper, we describe Youth StreetConnect, a tool formed by two mobile apps, which will connect young homeless women to local healthcare providers. Considering that cellular phones are common among homeless individuals, particularly teenagers, our tool has the potential to make an impact on these women's lives.
    No preview · Conference Paper · Oct 2014
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    ABSTRACT: Background The drastic surge in the number of homeless families in the United States (U.S.) has resulted in an increase in the number of homeless students attending U.S. public schools. Meanwhile, the U.S. public school system is struggling to meet the educational needs of their homeless students. Objective This study examined the historical trajectory of U.S. federal initiatives that aim to respond to the needs of homeless youth; homeless youth research, classifications and typologies; homeless youth social conditions; and the factors that foster or impede their education. Methods This study reviewed U.S. federal policies that intend to address homeless youth needs and education; the causes and impact of homelessness on youth; the economics of homelessness; and the relevance of resiliency in improving homeless youth prospects. Results Despite the enormous challenges homeless youth face, some manage to successfully graduate from high school. While homeless youth are incapable of building or institutionalizing the support networks and structures they need, they are capable of utilizing available support systems within their surroundings. Conclusion Without responsive structural support this vulnerable population is at high risk of failure. Several federal programs are mandated to assist homeless youth meet their basic needs and education. For these programs to realize their objectives, deliberate efforts must be expanded to assess and evaluate program efficiency. Also, past federal educational initiatives may offer insights on how to better chart and inform the many existing federal homeless youth programs that aim to meet the diverse and complex needs of homeless students.
    Preview · Article · Feb 2015 · Child and Youth Care Forum