US Teenage Birth Rate Lowest in 70 Years – Still The Highest Worldwide [Video]
Teen birth rates in the United States have declined to the lowest rates seen in seven decades, yet they are still nine times higher than in most other developed countries and racial and ethnic disparities continue to persist. In 2011, nearly 330,000 babies were born to women aged 15–19 years.
Teenage pregnancy is described as a pregnancy in a female under the age of 20. A pregnancy can take place as early as two weeks before the subjects menstrual cycle, which signals the possibility of fertility, but usually occurs after the menstrual cycle ends.
In healthy teenage girls, the menstrual cycle normally occurs for the first time at 12 or 13 years of age.
Teen pregnancy and childbearing bring substantial social and economic costs through immediate and long-term impacts on teen parents and their children and strains the public sector. Having a child during the teen years carries high costs—health, economic, and social—to the mother, father, child, and community. The children of teenage mothers are also more likely to have health problems, give birth as a teenager themselves, and face unemployment as a young adult.
Teenage pregnancy rates vary between countries because of differences in levels of sexual activity, general sex education provided and access to affordable contraceptive options. Worldwide, teenage pregnancy rates range from 143 per 1000 in some sub-Saharan African countries to 2.9 per 1000 in South Korea.
Prevention of teen pregnancy requires broad-based efforts including evidence-based sexual health education, support for parents in talking with their children about pregnancy prevention and other aspects of sexual and reproductive health, and ready access to effective and affordable contraception for teens who are sexually active. Parents, educators, public health and medical professionals, and community organizations all have a role to play in reducing teen pregnancy.
The latest data from the United States shows that the states with the highest teenage birthrate are Mississippi, New Mexico and Arkansas while the states with the lowest teenage birthrate are New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Vermont.
Pregnant teenagers face many of the same obstetrics issues as women in their 20s and 30s. There are however, additional medical concerns for mothers younger than 15. For mothers between 15 and 19, risks are associated more with socioeconomic factors than with the biological effects of age. However, research has shown that the risk of low birth weight is connected to the biological age itself, as it was observed in teen births even after controlling for other risk factors.
In developed countries, teenage pregnancies are associated with many social issues, including lower educational levels, higher rates of poverty, and other poorer life outcomes in children of teenage mothers. Teenage pregnancy in developed countries is usually outside of marriage, and carries a social stigma in many communities and cultures.
Many studies and campaigns have attempted to uncover the causes and limit the numbers of teenage pregnancies. Among OECD developed countries, the United States, United Kingdom and New Zealand have the highest level of teenage pregnancy, while Japan and South Korea have the lowest in 2001.
Watch this video from Maury Povich showing 3 teenage girls that will stop at nothing to get pregnant. It will blow your mind!
As Always, Sam Davis