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Fewer students doing drugs, more text and drive
Ohio teenagers are making many healthy decisions, but researchers say those kids could be making a lot better choices in other areas.
by WKSU's STATEHOUSE BUREAU CHIEF KAREN KASLER


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Karen Kasler
 
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The latest Youth Risk Behavior Survey from the Ohio Department of Health shows 70 percent of kids say they don’t drink alcohol, and 85 percent say they don’t smoke cigarettes. But ODH program consultant Sara Lowe says the newest question in the 20-year-old survey has researchers concerned.
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"One of the biggest concerns for us this year is a new question which is an effort to measure distracted driving," Lowe says. "And we saw that 46 percent of students reported texting while driving."

But Lowe says the study showed 92 percent of teens wear a seatbelt in the car, and just 17 percent of kids admit to riding with someone who has been drinking. Another group that has researchers worried is the 12.8 percent who admit to abusing prescription painkillers – but that number is down from the more than 21 percent who admitted prescription pain drug misuse last year.

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