top-rated free essay

Teenage Pregnancy

By khoo95 Jun 17, 2013 842 Words
Teenage pregnancy is a situation which involves female adolescents. A teenage female can be pregnant as early as age twelve or thirteen, although it is usually 14 and older. Teen pregnancy often depends on numerous societal and personal factors. The rates of teenage pregnancy vary from country to country and are related to differences of sexual activities, the general sex educations being provided and contraceptives being available. Teen pregnancy will sometimes involve low birth weight. Social matters, including although not limited to, strong rates of poverty and lower levels of education are usually involved. Pregnancy in teenagers is usually outside of marriage. The lowest levels of teenage pregnancy are around Japan and South Korea; the highest levels, on the other hand, are in the United Kingdom and United States.

Teenage pregnancy is pregnancy in a female under the age of 20. A pregnancy can take place before menarche (the first menstrual period), which signals the possibility of fertility, but usually occurs after menarche. In healthy, well-nourished girls, menarche normally takes place around the ages 12 or 13. Whether the onset of biological fertility will result in a teenage pregnancy depends on a number of personal and societal factors. Teenage pregnancy rates vary between countries because of differences in levels of sexual activity, marriage among teenagers, 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.

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 factor.

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. 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.

Of those teenage girls who choose to continue their pregnancy, a large proportion are from a disadvantaged or dysfunctional socio-economic background. They are increasingly young and, in many cases, were themselves born to teenage mothers (Charbonneau et al. 1989, in Cardinal Remete 1999; Morazin 1991). They generally occupy underpaid and undervalued work positions (Charbonneau et al. 1989, in Cardinal Remete 1999). These young women can nevertheless be very good mothers if they receive proper support.

In some cases, the father of the child is the husband of the teenage girl. The conception may occur within wedlock, or the pregnancy itself may precipitate the marriage (the so-called shotgun wedding). In countries such as India the majority of teenage births occur within marriage.

In other countries, such as the United States and the Republic of Ireland, the majority of teenage mothers are not married to the fathers of their children. In the UK, half of all teenagers with children are lone parents, 40% are cohabitating as a couple and 10% are married. Teenage parents are frequently in a romantic relationship at the time of birth, but many adolescent fathers do not stay with the mother and this often disrupts their relationship with the child. Research has shown that when teenage fathers are included in decision-making during pregnancy and birth, they are more likely to report increased involvement with their children in later years. In the U.S, eight out of ten teenage fathers do not marry their first child's mother.

However, "teenage father" may be a misnomer in many cases. Studies by the Population Reference Bureau and the National Center for Health Statistics found that about two-thirds of births to teenage girls in the United States are fathered by adult men age 20 or older. The Guttmacher Institute reports that over 40% of mothers aged 15–17 had sexual partners three to five years older and almost one in five had partners six or more years older. A 1990 study of births to California teens reported that the younger the mother, the greater the age gap with her male partner. In the UK 72% of jointly registered births to women under the age of 20, the father is over the age of 20, with almost 1 in 4 being over 25

Cite This Document

Related Documents

  • Teenage Marriage

    ...with marriage rates among teens soaring: in the 1990’s the teen marriage rate swelled 50%, reversing an adolescent marriage decline that had been on the fall for nearly 30 years (Chan). Marriage is still somewhat uncommon among teenagers, however nearly 4.5 out of every 100 teenagers between the ages of 14 and 19 are married (Chan). Teenage ...

    Read More
  • teenage pregnancy

    ...Teenage pregnancy is pregnancy in human females under the age of 20 at the time that the pregnancy ends. A pregnancy can take place in a pubertal female before menarche (the first menstrual period), which signals the possibility of fertility, but usually occurs after menarche. In well-nourished girls, menarche usually takes place around the age ...

    Read More
  • Teenage Pregnancy

    ...Teenage pregnancy can be defined as pregnancy of women who have not reached twenty years when the pregnancy ends regardless of the marital status. In South Africa one in three girls has had a pregnancy before the age of twenty. The community at large is aware of the problem of teenage pregnancy. Young women in our communities are falling pregnan...

    Read More
  • Teenage Pregnancy

    ...There are so many things we as teenagers have to gain during our teenage life especially our maturity. So how can we do that and also take responsibility for another child? Teenage pregnancy is complicated by our conflicting attitudes and behaviors. Yet we are shocked at the increasing numbers of teens who are sexually active. As we all know, t...

    Read More
  • TEENAGE PREGNANCY

    ...1. INTRODUCTION Teen pregnancy is pregnancy in human females under the age of 20 at the time that the pregnancy ends. A pregnancy can take place in a pubertal female before menarche (the first menstrual period), which signals the possibility of fertility, but usually occurs after menarche. In well-nourished girls, menarche usually takes place...

    Read More
  • Teenage Relationship

    ...presentation: Increase in Teenage Boy-girl Relationships in Singapore Central idea/thesis: Statistics and trends of teenage dating in Singapore 1. Introduction (A) Attention-getter: Now if I could just get the guys and the girls in the room to turn and face each other for a bit? (Audience does so)...

    Read More
  • The Negative Effects of Teenage Dating

    ...The Negative Effects of Teenage Dating Sean D. Foster Bellevue University The biggest threat about teenage dating is their inability to maintain a relationship. Teenagers mostly, do not understand the necessity of sustaining a relationship over a period of time. Therefore, frequent break ups and arguments lead to attempts of suicide, teenag...

    Read More
  • Reasons for Teenage Drug Use

    ...studies are done as well as how to address these problems within a small community rather than broadband. The audiences of this study are the parents and policy makers of the small community of Yuma, Arizona. This study is important for the particular audience because Yuma is increasingly becoming a hot spot on the United States map for the u...

    Read More

Discover the Best Free Essays on StudyMode

Conquer writer's block once and for all.

High Quality Essays

Our library contains thousands of carefully selected free research papers and essays.

Popular Topics

No matter the topic you're researching, chances are we have it covered.