Studies: Condoms and teens; fatigue research

Published May 15, 2007 12:00 am
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A new study has found that adolescents who use condoms the first time they have intercourse do not go on to have more sexual partners than others, and that they have lower rates of sexually transmitted diseases than those who do not use condoms the first time.

Beginning in 1994, the researchers studied a sample of 4,018 teenagers. All had had sexual intercourse by the second year of the study. Participants were tested for chlamydia and gonorrhea in 2001 or 2002, according to the study, which will appear in the June issue of The American Journal of Public Health.

Almost 62 percent of the teenagers used a condom the first time they had sex. Despite concerns that encouraging condom use leads to promiscuity, those who used condoms and those who did not had an average of five partners. But those who used a condom at their sexual debut were only half as likely to have a sexually transmitted disease seven years later.

- New York Times News Service

Free seminars

Classes will show how to cope with arthritis

As part of National Arthritis Month, the Utah Department of Health will offer free educational seminars about managing arthritis, which affects one in every five Utahns.

Each class will focus on a different joint area - ankle, foot, hand and knee - and will be presented by an arthritis resource specialist, an orthopedic surgeon, a physical therapist and a dietitian.

The classes take place Monday through Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at the Orthopedic Specialty Hospital, 5848 S. 300 East, Murray. For a complete list of events and classes, visit http://www.health.utah.gov/arthritis. The classes are cosponsored by the hospital and the Arthritis Foundation.

- Ana Breton

Fatigue solution?

Companies fight 'LPT' by allowing naps

Because of the costs associated with energy lulls that many 9-to-5ers experience in the afternoon, some employers are embracing a new solution: letting workers nap at work.

An article in the January issue of the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine says fatigued workers cost employers $136.4 billion each year in health-related ''LPT,'' or lost productive time.

It's at least part of the reason companies such as British Airways, Nike Inc. and Pizza Hut International allow their workers nap breaks and found productivity increased as a result. A NASA study found that a short nap can boost workers' output by as much as 34 percent.

Workman Publishing Co. is using employees to test the veracity of one of its titles, ''Take a Nap! Change Your Life,'' by Harvard University-trained psychologist Sara C. Mednick.

She says that how and when people nap can determine their health, memory and productivity.

- McClatchy-Tribune Information Services

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