The negative consequences of teen pregnancy and parenting have been well documented by public and private agencies, including the well-regarded Annie E. Casey Foundation. Advocates stress that teen pregnancy is a serious problem, because teen pregnancy is linked to many negative circumstances for both teen parents and their children. Around 40 percent of teen mothers receive their high school diplomas. Low academic achievement is both a cause and consequence of teen pregnancy. Estimates suggest that about one-half of all teen moms will receive welfare payments within five years of the birth of their first child.
Based on current projections to 2015, the adolescent birth rate fell from 59 births per 1000 women age 15–19 in 1990 to 51 births per 1000 in 2015 (WHO, 2015). However, teenage pregnancy trend varies in regional levels because of the variation of health determinants, population of adolescents and socio-cultural patterns. Much of the lifestyle, norms and economic status shapes the adolescent health outcome that significantly increases at one region and differs from the others. Child marriages is a primary source of income for most countries driven from poverty because of the challenging socio-economic statuses, yet hinders the opportunities for better education. Researchers claim that there is higher teenage pregnancy rate in developing regions compared to developed regions which is because it is proven that 95% of world’s adolescents are living in middle and low income areas of Sub-Saharan African and Western Pacific region.
However, Advocates are vocal as they say it is time to face the facts, as evidence suggest that a number of teenagers partake in sex are suffering from its harmful effects. These pro sex educations activists bask in this as they state “ If more teenagers are sexually active, why deprive them of the information they need to avoid early pregnancy and disease?” According to Craven (2008) the Unites States (US) is in forefront in the whole world regarding unwanted teenage pregnancies. Moreover, the likelihood of US teenagers becoming pregnant as well as having multiple partners exceed other teenager anywhere else in the world. A recent study revealed that sixty one percent (61%) of all high school seniors have had sexual intercourse, while half are currently sexually active, and twenty one percent (21%) have had four or more partners. More so early sexual activity among American teens has become a major public health
Summary: I have explained in this presentation the importance of sex education in reducing the rates of unwanted pregnancies among the adolescents. Secondly, sex education has been argued to contribute significantly to the reduction of the spread of HIV and AIDS among the adolescents. The third point that I have presented is that abortion levels have declined as a result of sex education targeting the adolescents in schools. Finally, I have argued that sex education results in fewer teenage pregnancies when compared to settings with no such education. 2.
These factors include: lack of knowledge about sex and how to use contraceptives; barriers to access contraceptives including negative attitudes of health staff; peer pressure; sexual coercion; low self-esteem; low educational expectations; poverty; family breakdown; and heightened sex-based messages in the media (Mothiba,T.M. & Maputle,M.S., 2012, p. 4). A review literature study posited that the data from developed countries indicate that an optimal prenatal program eliminates obstetrical risks among adolescent mothers and adverse pregnancy outcome is mainly due to socioeconomic cofactors. Most teenage pregnancies are unplanned and result often in a social disaster. Author also concluded that teenage mothers are more likely to drop out of school and have a low educational level.
About half of all South African teenagers aged between 15 and 19 reported having had sex. Teenage pregnancy is considered as one major distraction to the success of many girls’ education. Teenage pregnancy is a social problem with biological and physical consequences. Sexual education is now part of the learning area ‘Life Skills” in schools, but teenagers still fall pregnant because they are not open and lack transparency when discussing sexual matters. Teenage pregnancy has always been a medical problem no matter how many young girls are educated about sexual intercourse, condoms, contraceptives and HIV/AIDS.
Consequently, the high rates of very preterm birth among early teenagers had increased the risk of neonatal mortality (Olausson, 2005, p. 116). Preterm delivery and anemia were the most frequentl occurrences obstetric complications in teenage pregnancy (Watcharaseranee, Pinchantra, & Piyaman, 2006, p. 19). Teenage mothers who gave birth to their baby at the age of 17 or less had higher risk of low APGAR score on their neonates, which was minimum of 5. In addition baby born to teenage mothers had higher risk of low birth weight, preterm birth and neonatal mortality (Chen et al 2007, p.
Also teaching young men that if they become sexually active it will rearrange their lives forever. According to “Peter De Witt” about 40% of young people already experience sex by the time they talk to their parents. By this time they already committed unprotected sex which can cause unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases. This is why we should encourage more people to go into schools and give them sexual education classes. Help them get the idea that sex is not only sex that there are many consequences that come with it.
Fred writes, “more than a million teenagers become pregnant every year, most unintentionally. About 416,000 have abortions, 472,000 give birth and rest miscarry “(144). This alone should speak for itself on the ineffectiveness of our work. Teachers meant to lead the way into educating our students, are themselves under pressure and face opposition from parents mainly. This leads to poor deliverance of sex education.
It is appreciated that overall rates of teen sexual activity, pregnancy and maternity are declining, and that they are increasing their rates of contraceptive use. However, it has increased the proportion of young people who have had sexual intercourse at an early age. Further, the use of contraceptive use for the first time users increased and it has fallen afterwards. There is general consensus that the proportion of adolescents who engage in behaviours that put at risk of pregnancy and HIV and other infections (STI) sexually transmitted is still too high. Adolescent health professionals are faced with the dilemma of how to refine programmatic and research efforts to maintain the progress that has been made while reducing those risk behaviours that remain too prevalent.