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Revitalizing Adolescent Health Behavior After the COVID-19 Pandemic

Educational Objective
To identify the key insights or developments described in this article
1 Credit CME

In a prospective cohort study of public high school students in Northern California, Chaffee et al1 observed a decline in physical activity frequency during the stay-at-home orders related to the COVID-19 pandemic, but no change was observed in the frequency of substance use (ie, e-cigarettes, other tobacco, cannabis, and alcohol). The direct consequences of COVID-19 infection have received unprecedented scientific attention, but the indirect consequences that countermeasures to stem the spread of COVID-19 have had on health-related behaviors are less understood and may have long-term health consequences. The study by Chaffee et al1 helps address a critical gap in the understanding of how stay-at-home restrictions have had unintended implications for health-related behaviors in youth. We contend that such consequences could be prevented if similar circumstances arise in the future.

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Article Information

Corresponding Author: Sherry L. Pagoto, PhD, Institute for Collaboration on Health, Intervention, and Policy, University of Connecticut, 2006 Hillside Rd, Unit 1248, Room 22, Storrs, CT 06268 (sherry.pagoto@uconn.edu).

Published Online: May 3, 2021. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2021.0547

Conflict of Interest Disclosures: Dr Pagoto reported receiving grants from the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation and personal fees from Fitbit outside the submitted work. Dr Conroy reported receiving grants from the National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, and American Institute for Cancer Research and personal fees from Gelesis and Rutgers University/Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey outside the submitted work.

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