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I AM in Control.org Iowa Adolescents Making Choices to Control Their Future Teen:Health, Relationship, Body and Sexuality
May 1

Follow us on Twitter!

Posted By iamincontrol | May 1, 2014

Want to find out when IAMincontrol has a new post?  Follow us on Twitter @IAMincontrolIA for tweets about our posts and events for teens.  Retweet to share your favorite posts with your friends!
Jul 2

Why you Should Wear Sunscreen

Posted By iamincontrol | July 2, 2015

POLL RESULTS ARE IN!!

Overwhelming, you guys say you never wear sunscreen. But IAMinControl is here to help you change your mind.

The Fourth of July is right around the corner.  On the fourth, you can find me with a piece of watermelon in one hand and a hot dog in the other soaking up shutterstock_180184937the summer sun. I LIVE FOR SUMMER! I love the long summer days, with the grills fired up, and the SUN! But where there is sun, there is a potential for burns, blisters, or dehydration. Being sun-safe is important to the future of your skin and health. Here are things you should know about sun and sunscreen:

  1. SUNBURNS SUCK! They a.) hurt and b.) could cause many health issues, including skin cancer
  2. Use sunscreen that is SPF30 or higher and reapply every hour and/or every time you get out of the water.
  3. Tan lines can happen in weird places, to avoid, put sunscreen everywhere
  4. You’ll look red (think lobster)
  5. Blisters can happen, and they are gross
  6. Peeling skin looks great, NOT!

Just wear sunscreen, every time you are outside. And reapply many times and/or when you get out of the water. It will make your summer so much better and your skin will thank you when you aren’t a wrinkly mess in eighty years.

Jun 30

What is Self-Care and Why You Should Be Doing It?

Posted By iamincontrol | June 30, 2015

I am sure that all of you have heard the term “self-care”, maybe it has come from an adult or teacher who cares deeply.  But what does this tshutterstock_108045950erm mean and how does someone do self-care?

Self-care is when someone takes time to put themselves first. Many times we have competing priorities and our schedules are full of band practice, school play, baseball, our job, church group, and much more. It can be exhausting and soon we find ourselves falling asleep at practice or in class. We need to step away and recharge our battery for a day or night. About a year ago, I was going through a similar state of exhaustion, so I instated “Self Care Sundays”, which has completely rejuvenated me. Here are your steps to creating self-care:

  • Know Yourself: First, you should find out how you recharge your battery. Do you feel most at ease visiting friends or spending time by yourself? Take this Myers Briggs Test to find out your personality type and what recharges you: http://www.myersbriggs.org/my-mbti-personality-type/mbti-basics/
  • Find things that fit your personality type: Once you understand your personality, find tasks that play into ways that you recharge your battery. For example, if you like being alone, don’t spend your self-care night hanging out with a big group of people, instead cocoon in your bed and watch Netflix. If you who love to be around others, don’t spend it alone.
  • Make a plan for how you will achieve your self-care time: Clear your schedule if you want to be alone or make plans with friends if you need to recharge with people around. Whatever it is, just make sure it will happen.

Following these steps will get you on your way to a rejuvenated self that feels energized and focused.

 

Jun 25

6 Myths about Sex

Posted By iamincontrol | June 25, 2015

We have all heard about things about sex; sometimes it comes from inside the locker room, from our best friends, or even our older sibling’s friends. Bushutterstock_95551207t IAMinControl is here to tell you some myths about sex that need to be uncovered.

Myth: If I layer a condom, then the chances of pregnancy or sexually transmitted disease (STD) transfer are less likely.

Truth: One is plenty. Layers cause them to rub and break, so layering actually increases your chance

Myth: You won’t get pregnant if you are in a certain position or in a hot tub

Truth: FALSE, FALSE, FALSE! Your only sure fire way to not get pregnant is abstinence, while protection can greatly decrease your chances.

Myth: You can’t get pregnant during your period or having sex only one time or the first time

Truth: WRONG! Pregnancy can occur because sperm can hang out in reproductive organs for SIX days! And you can get pregnant from one vaginal sex encounter.

Myth: Everyone at my school is having sex

Truth: The average age of when a person has sex is 17. And most teens, do not have sex on a frequent basis. In fact, one third of people don’t have sex until they are 20.

Myth: I can’t get an STD from oral sex.

Truth: Wrong! These STDs can easily be passed along via oral sex.

Here is some additional information regarding sexual health: http://thenationalcampaign.org/why-it-matters

Jun 18

How to Break Up With Your Girlfriend/Boyfriend

Posted By iamincontrol | June 18, 2015

We’ve all been there: three months after that magical first date, the butterflies are gone and you realize your boyfriend/girlfriend is just holding you back from all the fun you could be having.  It isshutterstock_168991730 time to end the relationships; you know that, but how?

Here are the 4 essentials to breaking up with your boyfriend/girlfriend

  1. Don’t Stall

Once you know the relationship is over, make it known to your bf/gf.  Don’t make excuses about bad timing or not wanting to hurt him or her.  It is important to not string someone along in something that you know is not right.

  1. One – to – One

Unless there is a legitimate concern for safety (in which case consult a trusted adult), make the effort to meet in person and in private showing respect for your time spent together.  WARNING: Do not use this as an excuse to avoid number one.

  1. Set the Right Tone

As the person doing the breaking up, you open the conversation and set a tone for how that conversation will go. People respond in a similar way to how we treat them so if you come at your soon-to-be-ex with claws out and a sass flag waving, you can probably expect the same in return. Be prepared to listen, don’t blame, and accept that your ex might not do the same for you.

  1. Don’t Blast Your Ex on Social Media

Or anywhere else for that matter.  The anger, frustration or grief you may feel in the moment won’t last, but the things you say or post will.  Post-break up is not a time to air that dirty laundry in any kind of public way.

Break ups can be hard.  But they do not have to get nasty.  Check out Love is Respect (http://www.loveisrespect.org/healthy-relationships/) for more great reading on healthy relationships.

Jun 16

How to Stop Being Passive Aggressive and Be Politely Assertive Instead

Posted By iamincontrol | June 16, 2015

What is being passive aggressive anyway?  I promise, you see it all the time, and probably do it all the time too.  And it is time to cut it out.shutterstock_157929608

In their book, The Angry Smile, Drs. Long and Whitson define passive aggressive as, “a deliberate and masked way of expressing covert feelings of anger”.    So, for example, saying, “It’s fine” when your friend ripped the shirt she barrowed, or “no big deal” when your friend asks to barrow lunch money again but hasn’t paid you back from the last two times – but you are really feeling upset and frustrated with your friend – that is being passive-aggressive.  Maybe you even say, “It’s fine” with the sass that makes it clear that it really is not fine but you do not want to actually come out and say that it is not.

While it may seem harmless, being passive aggressive with our friends and loved ones can be damaging to our relationships and build relational habits that could destroy our future ability to make and keep good friends.  It is actually so much better for us if we are politely assertive instead.  Being politely assertive means respecting ourselves and others by being direct in our needs and feelings and sharing them honestly, yet kindly.  Read more on how to be politely assertive and the benefits here (http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/assertive/art-20044644).

Here are three tips for cutting out being passive aggressive and starting being politely assertive:

  1. Recognize it in yourself and others. Know what passive aggressive language and actions sound like and make a pact with yourself (and your better, future self) to cut it out from your vocabulary now.  You will thank yourself later.
  2. Be honest with yourself. We are passive to ourselves.  Sometimes we don’t want to recognize the hurt or frustration we are feeling even to ourselves.  But that doesn’t mean it isn’t there or that it is going away on its own.  It is so much better to do some self-reflection and understand our own true feelings and allow ourselves to feel them instead of pushing them down.
  3. Be honest with others. It can be so scary to let others know how we are truly feeling and it may seem like it is better to just make everything seem fine, or be obvious about it not being fine but in a way that does not really let anyone in. Take a risk with the people you love and trust the most and tell them, straight up, how you are feeling.

 

 

Try it out! Can you change one passive-aggressive response to a politely assertive one this week?

Jun 11

Recipe Edition: Five Refreshing and Healthy Summer Snacks

Posted By iamincontrol | June 11, 2015

image001

During the summer I like to remain active outdoors—soaking in sun, breathing the fresh air, hiking, camping, kayaking, playing with my dog, etc.  To avoid that bloating and uncomfortable full feeling that usually leads to me being lazy, I like to keep my meals and snacks light and refreshing so I can stay on my feet!  These five refreshing summer snacks are not only healthy, but low maintenance and easy to create!  From frozen yogurt to mozzarella, these five recipes are sure to make your 2015 summer one of the best summers of your life!  These recipes can be a foundation for you to reinvent and create your own personal summer snacks that are healthy, delicious and easy to make.

 

 

 

 

 

yougurt

 

 

 

 

(via MyFitnessPal)

  1. 4-Ingredient Blueberry Frozen Yogurt for Two

When the beads of sweat start to trickle down my face while outside, this protein-packed snack helps alleviate me from the heat and give me the punch of energy I need to stay active.

Ingredients – (makes two servings)

2 cups Frozen Blueberries

1/3 cup Non-fat Plain Greek Yogurt

1 tablespoon Honey

½ Tablespoon Lemon Juice

Directions

Place all the ingredients into a blender and mix until smooth. If you would like the frozen yogurt to have more of a sorbet taste, add a tiny bit more lemon juice.  Serve immediately with your favorite toppings.  For me, I like to dress it up with organic, low-calorie whip cream and fresh berries (e.g. blueberries, strawberries).

Nutrition Information –

Serving size – 1 cup

Calories –135

Total Fat – 0g

Carbohydrates – 31g

Dietary Fiber – 3g

Sugar – 24g

Protein – 5g

wraps

 

 

 

 

 

 

(via MyFitnessPal)

  1. Fresh Berry Peanut Butter Crepes

Holy crepe! When I am in a rush out the door and need something fresh, sweet, and savory, I look to my buddy Nutella!  This summertime snack will satisfy that sweet tooth, while keeping the calories under control.

Ingredients –

1 small Whole-Wheat Tortilla (approx. 80 calories in your grocer’s freezer section)

1 tablespoon Peanut Butter

¼ cup Blueberries

2 strawberries, sliced

Directions –

Spread the peanut butter evenly on the tortilla.  Layer berries on top and roll tightly and gently, making sure to avoid tearing the crepe.  Cut in half and serve.

Nutrition Information –

Serving size – 1 crepe

Calories – 212

Total Fat – 8g

Carbohydrates – 31g

Dietary Fiber – 2g

Sugar – 20g

Protein – 3g

bites

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(via MyFitnessPal)

  1. Baked Mozzarella Bites

Fried mozzarella has been somewhat of a passion of mine.  I would always grab the frozen pound bags at the grocers.  However, I soon found out that this wasn’t the healthiest option for snackage.  So, I turned to these delicious deluctables to satisfy my fried mozzarella obsession.  This is for those with more experience in the kitchen.  Make sure you have a guardian or supervision while making!

Ingredients –

1/3 cup Panko (Japanese Breadcrumbs)

3 (1-ounce) Sticks Part-Skim Mozzarella String Cheese

3 tablespoons Egg Whites

Cooking Spray

¼ cup Lower-Sodium Marinara Sauce

Directions –

  • Preheat oven to 425*F
  • Heat a medium skillet over medium heat. Add 1/3 cup of Panko to pan, and cook for 2 minutes or until toasted, stirring frequently.  Remove from heat, and place the Panko in a shallow dish.
  • Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray
  • Cut mozzarella sticks into 1-inch pieces. Working with one piece at a time, dip cheese in egg substitute; toss in panko.  Place cheese on backing sheet coated with cooking spray.
  • Bake at 425* for 3 minutes or until the cheese is softened and thoroughly heated.
  • Pour marinara sauce into a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on HIGH 1 minute or until thoroughly heated, stirring after 30 seconds.  Serve with mozzarella pieces

Nutrition Information –

Serving size – 3 mozzarella bites + 1 tablespoon of sauce

Calories – 98

Total Fat – 5g

Carbohydrates – 7g

Dietary Fiber – 0g

Sugar – 1g

Protein- 7g

 smoothie

 

(via popsugar.com)

  1. PB&J Smoothie fit for Katy Perry

Sometimes, I like to go old school and nothing says old school like peanut butter and jelly!  Something Katy Perry and I have in common outside our talented voices is our love for this smoothie.  As a smoothie fanatic, this beauty is stored in my smoothie arsenal and perfect for a hot summer day!  This is sure to be a crowd pleaser!  Packed full of an entire day’s worth of fiber, this smoothie can easily substitute a meal!

Ingredients –

2 cups Fresh Strawberries

1 frozen Banana, chopped

2 teaspoons Peanut Butter

4 ounces Fat-Free Plain Greek Yogurt or Fat-Free Milk

½ c Ice Cubes

Directions –

Place all ingredients in a blender and mix until desired texture.  Enjoy immediately.  If you aren’t afraid of a few more calories, garnish this with a few sliced strawberries.

Nutrition Information

Serving size – 1

Calories – 302

Total Fat – 6.2g

Carbohydrates – 56.8g

Dietary Fiber – 26.2g

Sugar – 34.8g

Protein – 9.5g

popsicles

 

 

 

 

 

(via formulamom.com)

  1. Orange Pink Lemonade Popsicles

As the temperatures sore into the upper 80’s and above, staying cool becomes the ultimate goal.  One way I keep myself outside on a sweltering summer day is the help of this vibrant homemade popsicle that is sure to impress your parents, guardians, and friends!  Let this recipe help you come up with your very own Popsicle concoctions!

Ingredients –

Small Paper Dixie Cups

Wooden Craft Sticks

Pink Lemonade

Zero-Calorie Orange Powerade

Serving Tray (able to fit into freezer)

Patience

Directions

  • Place Dixie cups on serving tray and pour a layer of Powerade into the bottom of the Dixie cups.
  • Place tray in freezer for about 30 minutes, when the layer has started to freeze, but isn’t quite solid.
  • Remove tray from freezer and insert wooden craft sticks into Dixie cups.
  • Return to freezer and freeze until layer is solid—about 60 minutes.
  • Remove tray from freezer and add a layer of pink lemonade drink. Put in freezer for another 30 minutes.
  • Remove tray from freezer and add more Powerade and allow it sit for a minute so it can mix together. Return to freezer and freeze until solid—about 45 minutes.
  • Add a final layer of pink lemonade and free until solid—45 to 60 minutes.
  • Serve immediately

Recipes are courtesy of PopSugar, MyFitnessPal, and Formula Mo

Jun 9

Signs of An Eating Disorder

Posted By iamincontrol | June 9, 2015

shutterstock_109265087In the U.S., an estimated 30 million men and women will suffer from an eating disorder (https://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/get-facts-eating-disorders) in their lifetime.  Eating disorders are a serious mental illness, in fact, there are more deaths from eating disorders (http://www.nimh.nih.gov/about/director/2012/spotlight-on-eating-disorders.shtml)  than any other mental illness.  If you are concerned about a friend or loved one’s behavior and eating habits, do not brush it aside in hopes it will go away.  Experts agree (http://www.drannkearneycooke.com/) that the best thing you can do for someone struggling with an eating disorder is to have a conversation about it.

Let’s talk about what an eating disorder is and some common warning signs.  Know that if you are concerned about someone, it is okay to talk with them even if they are not showing these exact signs.

First, it is important to understand that disordered eating is not as simple as it may seem.  An eating disorder is a mental health illness and is not really about food or weight.  Disordered eating is a way of dealing with emotional issues, stress, and a need for control.  Common eating disorder warning signs include (but are not limited to):

  • Significant weight loss or rapid weight gain or constantly fluctuating weight.
  • Distorted self-image, obsessive thoughts about weight – this could be shown through things like constant comparison to other’s weight, complaining about one’s weight in a way that drastically differs from what others see, overly criticizing aspects of one’s body in an obsessive way.
  • Making excuses to get out of eating or avoid situations where food is present
  • Eating alone, in secret, or hiding and storing high-calorie food
  • Obsessive exercising or exercising as punishment for eating

 

Jun 4

Alcohol Expectations and How They Fail

Posted By iamincontrol | June 4, 2015

Sometimes, it is hard to get away from the image that alcohol is only fun and games. In most Hollywood comedies, thshutterstock_137054423ere are scenes of individuals drinking heavily and having the night of their life. These scenes are not always true and it’s time for IAMinControl to slay these mythological expectations.

Expectation: Alcohol will make me loosen up and talk more.

Reality: Alcohol is actually a depressant, so it will make you less energetic as you drink. This makes you sleepy at parties or in social situations.  

Expectation: Alcohol will make me want to dance and make me good at it.

Reality: Alcohol can make it hard to see straight or be able to stand up and dance. A lot of times it causes dizziness, which is only worse when you try to dance.

Expectation: Alcohol will make me talk to that person I have a crush on.

Reality: Alcohol may cause you to talk to the girl or guy, but you may say something that you didn’t want to or you may not remember. Alcohol does not make you as smooth as you think.

Take the time to understand the realities of alcohol; it can be hard because everyone makes it seem like all fun and games. Here’s some information to about help with alcohol use: http://www.hhs.gov/ash/oah/adolescent-health-topics/substance-abuse/alcohol.html

Jun 2

Social Media, Screen Time and Your Health

Posted By iamincontrol | June 2, 2015

The Poll Results are IN!shutterstock_148110578

What is your favorite social media outlet?

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Instagram
  • Vine
  • iFunny
  • Snapchat

Facebook, Snapchat, and Instagram seem to be your favorite platform. Regardless of your preferred flavor of social media, you should know what effects it has on you and your life. First, the American Academy of Pediatrics suggests that you only get 1-2 hours of screen time entertainment per day. This includes computer, phone screens, tablets and television screens. Some of the effects of social media include increases of nearsightedness (sight is blurry for distant objects), obesity, and violent behaviors. There are some positives though, good amounts of usage can cause increases in the feeling of belonging and decreases in depression.

To achieve these positives, we need to limit our screen time, so use these four techniques to decrease your screen time:

  1. Create No Technology Zones in your house or room: This will help you create a space for your friends or family to gather, so that you can chat without the distractions of your phone.
  2. Shut off notifications on your phone: Without notifications, you won’t feel obligated to always check your phone.
  3. Put your phone in your pocket or purse while eating: If you keep your phone by your plate or on the table, you will want to check it. Plus, you may spill food or water on your phone. Water and phones do not mix.
  4. No TV in the bedroom: By having a TV in your room, you are more likely to watch TV before you sleep. This can cause restless sleep.

This summer enjoy the weather and get away from the screens.

May 26

When and How To: Testicular Examinations

Posted By iamincontrol | May 26, 2015

Many of the types of testicular cancer can be found in the early stages. This is why it is important for all guys to do Testicular Self-Examinations on a monthly basis. Ashutterstock_240581038lthough the cancer is rare in teenagers, it can be found in individuals as young as 15. These monthly tests help you become aware of what is the normal for your body. Here are the steps to a testicular self-examination:

  1. The examination should be completed during or right after a warm shower or bath. This allows for the scrotum (skin that covers the testicles) to be most relaxed, which makes it easier to examine the testicles.
  2. Feel one testicle at a time, by rolling each testicle between your fingers to feel the surface of the testicle.
  3. You should feel epididymis (the sperm-carrying tube) at the top/back part of each testicle. It is usually soft, but still a bump. This is a normal part of a testicle.
  4. If you feel any other bumps or soft spots, please seek medical attention.
  5. For some guys, one testicle will be smaller than the other.

Sometimes, if lumps are found, you should not be alarmed. They may not be cancerous, but still should be checked by a doctor. These examinations are a step to being cancer-free. Have more questions? Here’s more information: http://www.cancer.org/cancer/testicularcancer/moreinformation/doihavetesticularcancer/do-i-have-testicular-cancer-self-exam