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Entries in Young (4)

Wednesday
May302012

‘Old People’s Odor’ Exists, But Not Unpleasant

Comstock/Thinkstock(PHILADELPHIA) -- Elderly people do emit a characteristic odor, but it turns out they might actually smell better than younger people, according to a new study published online in PLoS ONE.

Researchers at Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia found that people could distinguish among the body odors of different age groups.

They asked 41 people to evaluate odors collected from the armpits of study participants from three different age groups -- people between the ages of 20 and 30; between 45 and 55; and between 75 and 95.

The evaluators rated the odors from the younger groups as more unpleasant than the odors from the elderly participants, and they also found that the older people’s odors were less intense.  The evaluators could also determine that odors came from old people, but could not correctly attribute the odors from the other groups.

These findings, said co-author Johan Lundstrom, confirm the popular belief of an “old people smell.”

“We do have an old people odor, but when taken out of the popular context, it doesn’t smell as bad,” said Lundstrom.

The study also found that younger men smelled worse than younger women, but among the participants older than 75, men and women smelled pretty much the same.

It’s not clear exactly what’s behind the ability to discriminate between the age groups and the sexes, the authors wrote.

“An older study found that there is one chemical that varies with age, but we don’t know if that’s the chemical people are picking out,” Lundstrom said.

It’s also possible that the loss of testosterone, changes in the skin, changes in the sweat glands or a combination of these factors play a role in why the sexes don’t smell much different at older ages.

There may be an advantage to being able to discern the smell of old age among animals.

For example, the authors wrote, “older male insects have a higher reproductive success than their younger competitors,” and “reproductive success is a highly sought-after trait.”

The authors also believe it’s likely that had the evaluators been aware that the odors came from elderly people, they may have rated them as more unpleasant.

Future research, they continued, will focus on identifying the mechanism behind age-related body odor discrimination.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Monday
Apr302012

Four-Year-Old in Makeup: How Young Is Too Young?

Huntstock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- A mommy blogger who wrote about her child's new fascination with adult cosmetics has ignited an online debate over how young is too young for girls to become interested in beauty.

Lindsay Cross wrote on the website Mommyish.com about how her 4-year-old daughter Brenna's interest in cosmetics came about after the young girl watched her apply makeup before attending events. When she shared how applying cosmetics soon became a special bonding routine between mother and daughter, she didn't anticipate the intense reaction from the online community and beyond.

"When I wrote the piece I didn't think it was that monumental of a deal," Cross told ABC News. "I didn't think that it was something that was just too out of the norm...I did notice some articles that said 'Suri Cruise wears very bright lipstick,' and there were so many people who were critiquing their parenting choices, because this 5-year-old is wearing makeup. I was like -- 'of course she does, she's 5 and her mom wears lipstick.'

"I think that [in] parenting, we all want everybody to be like us, because I think then that means that we did it right," she added.

Reaction to Cross's article ranged from Internet commenters who say that she is allowing her daughter to fall prey to society's notions of beauty at far too young an age, to a psychiatrist who maintains that this can lead to an unhealthy desire for flawlessness.

"As someone whose mom couldn't leave the house without being done-up, and subsequently infused this into her daughters' psyches, I say watch out," one commenter wrote. "Please don't help your daughters fall into the 'pretty' trap so young."

Adolescent psychiatrist Henry Paul agrees, saying that 4 years old is too young for a girl to be wearing makeup.

"The use of makeup in some way can be addictive, and what these children would be addicted to is the pursuit of perfection -- the superficial, skin-deep, I'm only as good as I look [attitude]," Paul said.

Cross, however, maintains that her daughter's makeup is just child's play.

"I think that with makeup, for her, it's a way for her to be like her mom. I don't think that she puts two and two together, where you have to wear makeup so that you can present yourself to the world," Cross explained.

Cross says that when she brings her daughter out, most people don't notice that Brenna is wearing makeup, as she does not wear red lipstick, eyeliner, mascara, or foundation.

When asked, Brenna said that she likes to wear makeup "because it makes me pretty."

Cross says that she does understand that it is contradictory to tell her girl that one doesn't have to wear makeup to be beautiful, but that she's allowed to because she feels the prettiest when she puts it on. She says that she intends to have a more serious conversation on the matter when Brenna is older.

For now, Cross say she just wants her daughter to enjoy being a child.

"Now it's dress-up and playing pretend," she said. "It's playing that she's older. And I think that as she gets to be a bit older, she'll look at it differently, and well talk about it differently."

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Nov302011

Sports Concussions Lessen Blood Reaching Kids' Brains

Comstock/Thinkstock(CINCINNATI) -- Concussions can reduce blood flow to young athletes' brains for a month or more, although their brains also appear more resilient in many ways than those of similarly injured adults, researchers report.

A single sports-related concussion in a young person generally produces minor trauma, which the researchers described as more of a disruption to brain function than the structural and metabolic damage similar concussions inflict on adult brains.

The findings come from a study assessing the effects of concussions on nine boys and three girls, ages 11 to 15, who'd been injured during football, soccer or wrestling.  The study group comprised three girls injured while playing soccer, one boy injured while wrestling and seven boys injured on the football field.  Two football players were knocked unconscious during the incidents; three of the football players had suffered previous concussions more than a year earlier.

When the researchers, led by Dr. Todd Maugans, a pediatric neurosurgeon at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, compared injured athletes' brains to brains of healthy youngsters of the same age and sex, MRIs found less blood flowing through the injured athletes' brains in the immediate aftermath of their head injuries.  The brain-injured athletes also had slower reaction times.

However, by the two-week mark, blood flow for 27 percent of the injured athletes returned nearly to the levels of healthy subjects and most of their symptoms had resolved.  Follow-up at a month or more found 64 percent of the injured athletes had normal blood flow again, and everyone's reaction times were normal, according to results published online Wednesday in the journal Pediatrics.

With 36 percent of the group experiencing persistent blood flow reductions a month or more after their injuries, "our results reinforce the concept that a protracted state of physiologic abnormality exists for some young athletes," the researchers wrote.

The authors theorized that diminished blood flow produces some of the symptoms associated with concussions, most of which resolve with time.  They were unable to say what long-term effects might result from lessened blood flow.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun222011

Girl, 5, Becomes Makeup Guru: How Young Is Too Young?

Jupiterimages/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Madison Hohrine of Hurst, Texas, is an expert at applying lipstick, applying blush to the contours of her cheeks and applying mascara to her eyes. She is such an expert, in fact, that millions of people are logging online every day to watch and learn from one of Madison's makeup tutorials.

What they see when one of Madison's videos pops up may surprise them. Madison is just 5, but despite her youth, Madison is a makeup-applying Internet sensation.

Her tutorials on the video-sharing site YouTube, in which she covers everything from her favorite lipsticks, to what beauty products to buy, to how to bring out the colors in your eyes with shadow, have generated over 1.2 million clicks. Her video tutorial on the intricacies of makeup brushes alone was viewed more than 700,000 times.

Madison became fascinated by makeup as so many little girls do, by watching her mom.

"I started watching the YouTube videos and she would watch them with me," Madison's mother, Mary Hohrine, told ABC’s Good Morning America. "And one day she just asked me if she could record herself just to see what she would look like doing the video."

A few brushes of blush and rehearsals in front of the camera later, and Madison was hooked.

Popping up more and more frequently next to Madison's videos on YouTube are those of other young girls, ages 3 to 11, who, like Madison, are just as well-versed in mascara as they are the fairytales and alphabet letters more familiar to childhood.

That young girls are both using grown-up cosmetics and airing their makeup tips online has some parenting experts raising their eyebrows.

"It's weird for a little girl to know about contouring and makeup and angles," Dr. Logan Levkoff, author of the book Third Base Ain't What it Used to Be, said to GMA.

"We have a society where we sexualize little girls, almost from birth on," she said.

In an age where celebrities, makeover shows and beauty pageants are all the rage, the trend is putting back in focus the question of whether little girls and makeup is too cute, or too much too soon. Experts such as Levkofk believe the young girls offering makeup tips online, and the public's fascination with them, are the result of today's pressure-filled, beauty-obsessed society.

"The fact is all these Toddlers & Tiaras shows, the products, whether it's push-up bras for tween girls or shapeups for girls to firm their butts, all of this sends the message that our girls aren't good enough," said the New York City-based psychologist.

"It's the message that our girls aren't valued."

But that is a message Mary Hohrine feels confident her daughter is not receiving.

"She is a normal 5-year-old," said Mary. "It's the same thing as if she's playing dress-up."

Mary says that does not mean she is not aware of the dangers of letting her daughter grow up too fast and so enforces strict rules when it comes to allowing Madison free reign with the blush, eye shadow and lipstick she flaunts online.

Though makeup made her famous, Madison is not allowed to use products or wear any makeup on a daily basis.

"When she asks to be putting makeup on every day, then I'll be getting worried," said Mary.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio