- Fertility & Reproductive Systems
Is Teen Pregnancy On the Rise?
With all the teen celebs coming out pregnant, and with movies like "Juno," it's just assumed that teen pregnancy is on the rise. But is it?
During the teenage years, kids experiment with sex, which tends to mean unprotected sexual behaviors, which can lead to a pregnant daughter.
I would first suggest that if you don't want to be a grandma or grandpa at the age of 40 or younger, to talk to you kids early and constantly. Don't bug them about sex, just make sure that they know and understand that your door is always open for questions and advice.
Being a Teenage Mom
In all reality, being a pregnant teen takes two. I don't think I know of a teenager who would go to a sperm bank, even with parent consent (whatever reason a parent would consent beats me), and ask to be knocked up.
When teens have unprotected sex, it tends to fall on the female to decide whether or not to raise the baby. If she decides to raise the baby, all responsibility usually falls on her and her parents and family. In most cases the male teenager does not stick around long term. Now, that's not always the case, but it tends to be.
Being a mom, in general is a lot of responsibility, but being a teenager and a mom requires a big tole on the mother.
As a parent, of whatever age, you have involve a lot of emotion, compassion, devotion, strength, and knowledge into your child. Also, as a parent, patience is the key to raising kids, and most teenagers don't have the proper patience level necessary.
I, personally, don't think that any teenager is really ready for the responsibility of being a parent, no matter how responsible they think they are.
Any teenager who is having unprotected sex, is not responsible enough to raise a child (in my opinion).
As a teenage mother:
- You still have to continue your education, or at least attempt to.
- Deal with the pregnancy and the emotions that are involved.
- Raise a child will either working, going to school, or both.
Teenage parents tend to rely on family to help get them through the initial shock of being a parent at say 14 or 15 years old.
Being a teenager, the child is still growing physically and mentally, so if a female teen gets pregnant, she and her unborn child is more prone to health risks than a twenty or thirty year old woman.
- About 18% of U.S teenagers have experienced sex prior to being 15 years old.
- 66% of unmarried teens have sex by the age of 19.
- By age 20, about 75% of American females and 86% of males are sexually active.
- By age 20, about 40%of white women and 64% of black women will experienc at least 1 pregnancy.
- About 1 million teenagers become pregnant each year, and more than 530,000 give birth.
- About 9% of teenage girls have low-birth weight babies.
- Every 26 seconds a teenager gets pregnant, and every 56 seconds a teenager gives birth.
- About 85% of all teenage pregnancies are unplanned.
- About 13% of all U.S. births are to teenagers
U.S. Teen Pregnancy Statistics
The statistics don't lie. Although, they are not 100% accurate, they do tell a close estimate about teenage pregnancy.
And, it actually surprised me to read the statistics about teen pregnancy rates.
Between the years 1990 and 2002, the United States teen pregnancy rates declined about 28%.
In 2002, the teenage birth rate was 30% lower than 1991 rates of about 61.8 teenage births in every 1,000 births.
By 2002, the teenage abortion rate dropped about 50% than it was in 1988, when teenage abortion was at its highest.
So, surprisingly or not, teen pregnancy is on the decline.
For more in- dept statistics about the U.S. teen pregnancy rate, you can check out this PDF file published by the Guttmacher Institute.- U.S. Teen Pregnancy Statistics: National and State Trends and Trends by Race and Ethnicity.