A recent cross-sectional study (RMC Kagawa et al. J Pediatr 2019; 209: 198-203) shows a high rate of gun carrying among adolescents in the U.S.
- Based on a sample of 10,112 adolescent who completed surveys, 2.4% of adolescents reported carrying a gun in the prior 30 days.
- Carrying a gun was more common among adolescents with a conduct disorder (adjusted prevalence ratio 1.88), drug use disorders (APR 1.91) and patients with specific phobias (APR 1.54)
- The authors estimate that 1.1% of adolescents with a disorder associated with self- or other-directed violence also carry guns. This extrapolates to 272,000 adolescents with both risk factors.
- Nearly two-thirds of adolescents who report gun carrying had a mental health disorder
- Guns are everywhere. Gun carrying among adolescents, while only a small percentage of all adolescents, represent a grave risk; especially, since the majority who report carrying guns (in this study) have mental health issues.
- Safe storage needs to be a requirement of gun ownership. Gun access and misuse by adolescents is a ‘clear and present danger’ (apologies to Tom Clancy).
Related blog posts:
- No Exaggeration: Too Many Children Are Dying in the U.S.
- Firearm Mortality -Tragic Inertia
- Another Day in the US: School Deaths Related to Firearms
- Is It OK for Pediatricians to try to Prevent Firearm Injuries? Focus on Child Safety –Not on Gun Safety
- Physician narrative on gun control | gutsandgrowth
- What to Fear in 2015 | gutsandgrowth
- Firearm Mortality in U.S.
- NY Times: End the Gun Epidemic in America | gutsandgrowth