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K-State Research and Extension
123 Umberger Hall
Manhattan, KS 66506-3401

June 6, 2023

The Community Health Corner

Submitted by Stephanie Gutierrez

Social Media

Community health uses science-based approaches for the greatest health benefit to the greatest number of people by addressing the social, economic, and structural drivers that impact everyone’s health. The National Extension Framework for Health Equity and Well-being recommends using community development practices to ensure that every person has the opportunity to "attain his or her full health potential" and no one is "disadvantaged from achieving this potential because of social position or other socially determined circumstances." The following tools and resources can be used to improve health equity and well-being by working with communities to achieve the nation’s Healthy People 2030 objectives.

READ NOW: TFAH recently released the report Pain in the Nation 2023: The Epidemics of Alcohol, Drug, and Suicide Death, which found that the rate of U.S. deaths due to alcohol, drugs, and suicide climbed 11 percent in 2021. A record 209,225 Americans lost their lives due to alcohol, drugs, or suicide last year, and these deaths are part of a two-decade trend of sharply increasing fatalities due to substance misuse and suicide in the U.S. The 2021 data showed such deaths were up across the U.S. population, with the largest increases occurring among certain populations of color as well as people living in the South, West, and rural regions of the country. The report includes recommendations for steps federal, state, and local policymakers should take to begin to reverse the deaths of despair crisis.

JOIN NOW: The National Academies' Roundtable on Obesity Solutions is hosting a two-part workshop series titled, Exploring the Science on Measures of Body Composition, Body Fat Distribution, and Obesity. Building on the previous workshop that explored the current science, the June 26th workshop will focus on strategies for improving communication about body composition, body mass index (BMI), adiposity, and health across diverse groups and sectors. Presentations will address communicating the diagnosis and definition of obesity, innovations for communicating about body weight to mitigate weight bias and stigma, and the ethics and trust challenges in communicating about body weight. The workshop will also include discussions about long-term communication strategies and promoting change in culture and perception around body weight. The event will be accessible via live webcast. Learn more on the event page.

DISCOVER NOW: This morning, the U.S. Surgeon General released a new advisory on Social Media and Youth Mental Health. This Advisory describes the current evidence on the impact of social media on the mental health of children and adolescents. According to the resource, social media use among young people is nearly universal, with up to 95% of teenagers, and even 40% of children aged 8-12, on social media. Despite this widespread use among children and adolescents, there is not yet enough evidence to determine if social media use is sufficiently safe for them—especially during adolescence, a particularly vulnerable period of brain development.

For more information, contact Elaine Johannes, ejohanne@ksu.edu, and Stephanie Gutierrez, smgutier@k-state.edu.