About 1 In 9 American Kids Use Alternative Medicine

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

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A new national study finds that more than one in nine children and teens use some form of alternative medicine.

One of the study's authors calls the statistic is "pretty amazing," given that children are generally pretty healthy.

The government study is the first measure of children's use of such remedies, including acupuncture, meditation and chiropractic care. Adult use of alternative treatments remains about the same as it was in 2002 -- more than one in three.

Herbal remedies were the most popular type of alternative medicine for both adults and those under 18. Leading the list for children were echinacea (ehk-ih-NAY'-shuh), used for colds, and fish oil, sometimes given for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Among the most common for adults were glucosamine, used for joint pain, and fish oil, which has been linked to reducing the risk of heart disease.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study is based on a 2007 survey of more than 23,000 adults who were speaking about themselves and more than 9,000 adults who were speaking on behalf of a child in their household.

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