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Teenage Pregnany

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I. PROBLEM
“Teenage Pregnancy”

II. OBJECTIVES ➢ To be aware of the consequences of teenage pregnancy ➢ To understand the risks of teenage pregnancy and identify some ways to prevent it ➢ To know the possible causes and effects of teenage pregnancy

III. INTRODUCTION

Dealing with the responsibility of being a parent is one of the hardest tasks to take on. Becoming a parent involves emotion, compassion, dedication, strength, knowledge, protectiveness, and being able to financially support the child. Parenting also involves many other components, which sometimes come with the territory of being a parent. One of the major concerns of having a child or becoming a parent is to do so when you're old and mature enough to take on the responsibility. One of the problems in today's society is teenage pregnancy. Teenage pregnancy is defined as a teenage or underage girl, usually within the ages of 13 -17, becoming pregnant. The term in everyday speech usually refers to women who have not reached legal adulthood, which varies across the world, who become pregnant. It is a worldwide problem that accompanies the initiation of sexual activity at increasingly younger ages. The risk of pregnancy in teenagers is increasing largely. Many teenagers don't know how big of a responsibility it is to raise another human being when they themselves still have a lot of growing to do. Also, teenagers are more prone to risks during a pregnancy than a twenty or thirty year old woman would be. Becoming a teen parent automatically gives you a big responsibility to deal with. This means that all of your personal priorities are set aside and that your child comes first. Most teens don't even know how to take care of a child. Taking care of your own child isn't like babysitting; it is a full time job. Dealing with children involves a lot of patience, which a lot of teens don't have. Teenage mothers do not only have to face social stigma and discrimination but also are more prone to complications related to pregnancy. Pregnant teens are at more risk for certain health problems (such as high blood pressure or anemia) than pregnant women who are older. Pregnant teens also are more likely to go into labor too early. These risks are even greater for teens that are younger than age 15 years. As a teen, finding out that you are pregnant is a life-changing and scary event. As a parent, finding out your teen is pregnant can both shock you and cause despair.

IV. DATA ANALYSIS

1. CONSEQUENCES OF TEENAGE PREGNANCY

Teen pregnancy is one of the most difficult experiences a young woman passes through. The stress of pregnancy, revelation of pregnancy to parents, and moving on despite the shame and worry can be terrifying.

• Teenagers who have babies are more likely to not finish high school and have their future plans interrupted. With her education cut short, a teenage mother may lack job skills, making it hard for her to find and keep a job. A teenage mother may become financially dependent on her family or on public assistance. This leads to less income and more people in poverty.

• Children of teenage mothers get minimum health care • In countries like India, a girl and her family are ridiculed in society

• Getting financial security and raising their children becomes difficult for teenage mothers

• Teenage pregnancy results in poor economic conditions and single parenting

• Usually teenage fathers are not ready for and deny to take responsibility of their children

• Children of teenagers are subject to abuse and neglect

• Teenage mothers have to depend on their parents for financial and emotional support

2. RISKS OF TEENAGE PREGNANCY

Teen pregnancies carry extra health risks to the mother and the baby The following were the possible reasons as to why teen pregnancy should be discouraged:

• Risk for malnutrition Since teenage mothers tend to eat poorly, they are also less likely to take the recommended daily multivitamins and minerals needed to maintain adequate nutrition of their baby. • Risk for inadequate prenatal care Teenage mothers are less likely to seek regular prenatal care since they are likely to avoid public exposure due to social stigma and discrimination. • Risk for fetal deaths Babies born to teenager moms have a more likely chance of having a low birth weight and this can lead to all sorts of medical problems later in life. And if these children grow up in homes where their families have a hard time supporting them, they grow up in poverty and do not always have access to good and sometimes any healthcare. Complication would include having high blood pressure that could severely affect the mother and her baby during pregnancy and while giving birth. • Risk for abortion Unplanned pregnancies could lead to abortion. While illegal, abortion continues to persist further increasing a pregnant individual’s risk to tetanus poisoning, adverse drug reaction and other complications related to abortion procedure. • Risk for acquiring cancer or disease Women who engage in sex before 18, have a pregnancy at or younger than 18, are at increased risk for acquiring different diseases or cancer.

3. CAUSES OF TEENAGE PREGNANCY

A teenage girl may become pregnant as a result of many different situations. Nowadays, mass media is the foremost reason why teenagers are exposed early to sex. The media have strong influence on the people, especially on the youth. You can find different pornographic magazines and movies that were being sold anywhere. With these kind of materials. it makes some teenagers to be curious on some things that is not yet appropriate for them. Another factor is the growing influence of Internet access in computers that gives easy way for adolescents to find sex-related materials. In just one click, you could find so many sites that has to do something about sex. Education about responsible sexual behavior and specific, clear information about the consequences of sexual intercourse (including pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, and psychosocial effects) are frequently not offered. As a result, much of the "sex education" that adolescents receive filters through misinformed or uninformed peers.

4. EFFECTS OF TEENAGE PREGNANCY

Facing an unplanned teen pregnancy can be hard. The effects of teenage pregnancy are not limited to having to decide whether or not to keep the baby or how to cope with motherhood One of the most immediate effects of teen pregnancy is how the growing baby changes a teenager's body as well as their lifestyle. Increased responsibilities were also given to teenage mothers. Missing out on typical adolescent experiences, juggling school and motherhood, and financial problems could be also the effects of teenage pregnancy.

a. IMPACT ON THE TEEN PARENTS Teen pregnancy brings all sorts of emotions and problems. Teen parents are more likely to be unmarried, live in poverty, be depressed, alcoholic and commit suicide. A teen mother is at high risk for repeat pregnancy and not finishing school; teen fathers are more likely to be involved in risky behavior and earn less money throughout adulthood than married men who become parents.

b. IMPACT ON THE CHILD Early motherhood can affect the psychosocial development of the infant. The occurrence of developmental disabilities and behavioral issues is increased in children born to teen mothers. Children born to teen mothers are often at a disadvantage physically and socially. Children born to young, unwed, low-income parents are at a much greater risk for inadequate prenatal care, low birth weight, and infant death as well as poor developmental outcomes. Children born might be abused or neglected, score lower in standardized testing, and are more likely to go to prison than a child born to an older mother. One study suggested that adolescent mothers are less likely to stimulate their infant through affectionate behaviors such as touch, smiling, and verbal communication, or to be sensitive and accepting toward his or her needs.
c. IMPACT ON THE FAMILY Teen pregnancy and motherhood can influence younger siblings. One study found that the younger sisters and brothers of teen mothers were less likely to emphasize the importance of education and employment and more likely to accept sexual initiation, parenthood, and marriage at younger ages. An additional study discovered that those with an older sibling who is a teen parent often end up babysitting their nieces and nephews and that young girls placed in such a situation have an increased risk of getting pregnant themselves. The family is still the primary support for teen parents. Young pregnant or parenting continue to live with their parents for an average of five years and they most often provide emotional support, housing, transportation, financial and childcare assistance for their child and grandchild. Parents of these new parents work twice harder to be able to provide for the family of their kids.

5. HOW TO PREVENT TEENAGE PREGNANCY?

We faced a glaring truth that at a very young age, a lot of young people today have children of their own. Teenagers are at a vulnerable stage of life. Their eagerness and curiosity may lead them straight into lifetime problems. However, there are possible things needed prevent teenage pregnancy.

• Abstinence Abstinence from sex before marriage can prevent the teenage pregnancy at large. Parents should not depend solely on schools to educate children about sex education. Early sexual intercourse increases the risks of sexually transformed diseases including HIV- AIDS. Self-discipline is always better then regret.

• Awareness Teenagers should be aware of how pregnancy at an early age can ruin their lives specially their dreams. They should be informed about the risks of having a baby at a very early age and they should be given insights on how adolescent pregnancy can affect the social, economic and emotional aspect of a teenager's life. Parents of teenagers may be the most valuable resource of all. When parents talk openly with their children about sexuality and responsibility starting at a young age, the children are less likely to rush ahead into parenthood.

TEENAGE PREGNANCY (MOST RECENT) BY COUNTRY – TOP 20
SOURCE: UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre

|RANK |COUNTRIES |
|1 |United States |
|2 |Poland |
|3 |Germany |
|4 |Canada |
| 5 |France |
|6 |Japan |
|7 |Australia |
|8 |Spain |
|9 |Italy |
|10 |Hungary |
|11 |Portugal |
|12 |Slovakia |
|13 |Czech Republic |
|14 |Greece |
|15 |New Zealand |
|16 |Austria |
|17 |Ireland |
|18 |Belgium |
|19 |Netherlands |
|20 |Norway |

V. CONCLUSION

Life is a matter of choice. As a teenager, we know the right from wrong. We should always think first a hundred times before getting into a situation. We should learn to look on the possibilities that might happen after doing something. Being pregnant at an early age is not a simple thing. We realize how complicated our life would be if we would got pregnant at an early age. We became aware to the possible effects, risks and consequences of teenage pregnancy. We learned the disadvantages it can bring in our lives. We have seen that it is not just ourselves (teenagers) that would be affected but also our family specially our parents and of course, the new born child. We would just serve as burdens to our parents if we would be teenage parents. We would be forced to leave school and our dreams would be shattered and would be left unfulfilled. Life is full of temptations. We should learn to practice self-control as well as self-discipline so that all the things we will do would be all right. We should not let our emotions control us. We should enjoy our life being a teenager because this is just once in a lifetime. There will always be time for everything. And most of all, we should keep in mind that as a teenager, our primary goal is to finish our studies and to help our parents as an appreciation and gratitude for all the things they have done for us.☺

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