Parents Are Talking recently hosted a webinar entitled “Sexual Health and Youth with Chronic Conditions” in partnership with AccessMatters, a Philadelphia nonprofit providing community education to parents and youth. This is the second webinar in a series of collaborations with AccessMatters focused on educating parental caregivers about communicating with young people about sexual and reproductive health.
Led by Shannon Criniti, PhD, MPH, VP for Strategic Initiatives at AccessMatters, and Sheila Quinn, DO, internist and adolescent medicine physician at CHOP, the webinar discusses normal adolescent response to changes in sexual development, highlights the challenges surrounding sexual health education for youth with chronic conditions, and identifies opportunities for parental caregivers to communicate with young people and their health providers.
About 31% of youth between 10 and 17 have one or more chronic health conditions, and 2.8 million US youth under 15 have some kind of physical, intellectual, or emotional disability. Yet youth with chronic health conditions and/or disabilities often receive little to no sexual health education, whether formal or informal, despite experiencing the same sexual feelings, needs, and desires as their peers. In this hour-long discussion, Dr. Criniti and Dr. Quinn provide parental caregivers with the resources to empower youth with chronic conditions with the information, reassurance, and practical guidance they need to build self-esteem and make informed decisions about their sexual and reproductive lives.