Following the government's announcement of a new plan to make school nurses more accessible [click here for full story] a National Children's Bureau survey has revealed that nearly 20 per cent of teenagers "would talk to a school nurse if they were worried about their health".
The online survey which gauged the views of nearly three hundred 11 to 19 year-olds on their own health and local health services, found that parents and carers were the top choice to talk to about health worries for three-quarters of the young people surveyed.
Barbara Hearn OBE, deputy chief executive of the National Children's Bureau, said: "The results of this survey, and the findings from our recent school nurses study with younger children, imply that young people will value and use sources of advice and support they can trust. With health reforms currently under the spotlight, we now have a moment in time to create a health system that can deliver. "
Over 85 per cent of the young people surveyed felt their health was "good or very good" but the same percentage also said they had experienced stress during the previous week with exams, future career and physical appearance identified as major reasons.
Teenagers also wanted more information in key areas, with over half of those surveyed wanting tips on how to reduce stress, a quarter on budgeting and nearly a third on healthy eating.
The topic of healthy eating for teenagers, particular in school meals, was covered by several speakers at last week's JFHC Live including registered dietitian Denise Kennedy.
In her seminar, "School Meals - have things improved since the turkey twizzler", Kennedy told delegates that while great strides have been made in recent year, changes are still needed as "one in five children enter school obese but the number clinically overweight has risen to one in three by the time they leave".
To address this problem and others picked up in their survey the NCB has called on the government to develop "a clear strategy to equip parents and carers to co-educators for children on health issues".