Adolescent pregnancies are a global problem but occur most often in poorer and marginalised communities. Many girls face considerable pressure to marry early and become mothers while they are still a child. Teenage pregnancy increases when girls are denied the right to make decisions about their sexual and reproductive health and well-being. Girls must be able to make their own decisions about their bodies and futures and have access to appropriate healthcare services and education. Girls who have received minimal education are 5 times more likely to become a mother than those with higher levels of education. Pregnant girls often drop out of school, limiting opportunities for future employment and perpetuating the cycle of poverty.
Risk Factors for Teen Pregnancy
Trends in Teen Pregnancy and Childbearing | tout-pas-cher.info
Teenage pregnancy is an important public health issue: it is common, largely preventable and associated with negative sequelae, both for the teenagers who become pregnant and for their children. Compared with babies of older mothers, those born to teenagers are more likely to have lower birth weights, increased infant mortality, an increased risk of hospital admission in early childhood, 1 less supportive home environments, poorer cognitive development and, if female, a higher risk of becoming pregnant themselves as teenagers. Rates of teenage pregnancy vary by country, but because of reporting differences, international comparisons can be difficult. In , the latest year for which international data are available for comparison, Canada had a pregnancy rate of From to , the rate of teenage pregnancy declined substantially in both Canada and the United States, 4 , 6 but it increased slightly in England and Wales 5 Table 1.
Sarah Pflugradt is a registered dietitian nutritionist, writer, blogger, recipe developer, and college instructor. Sarah has experience in clinical nutrition, outpatient nutrition counseling, and WIC Overseas. Sarah has authored many nutrition and wellness articles online and in-print, and has been quoted in digital publications and websites as a nutrition expert.
Having the ability to check off commonly accepted parenting prerequisites — a quality education, a good job, mental and emotional stability, a safe home — can make the challenge easier to tackle and overcome. Unfortunately, adolescents who become parents often have a shortage of key life skills and other resources that are vital to the parenting process. This sad reality is supported by research showing that, on average, children who are born to teen parents are less likely to ever reach their full potential. And the effects of teenage pregnancy on parent, baby, and community can be devastating.