Disturbing news, particularly if you happen to be the parent of an American teenager: More than one in four has "sexted" nude photos. Around half of teens have been asked to do so, while one-third of teens have asked someone else to do so, according to a new survey. The 28% of teens who did sext were also nearly twice as likely to have actually had sex, Bloomberg reports.
Though boys were more likely to ask for sexts, girls were just as likely to actually send them. But girls who sexted were also more likely to engage in dangerous behaviors like using drugs and alcohol before having sex, or sleeping with multiple partners. Researchers offer an idea to pediatricians, parents, and other adults: Ask teens about sexting as a way of screening for other sexual behavior. “These messages are really important to adolescents,” says an expert. “We’ll want to think about how do we provide education and how do we provide prevention.”