Teenage Pregnancy: Reasons Risks and Solutions
Teenage pregnancy, which is sometimes also described as adolescent pregnancy is not something that happens out of choice. While there is no doubt about the fact that more and more teens are getting pregnant, majority of them have not planned for it and neither do they like the situation in which they have placed themselves.
Reasons Why Teenage Pregnancy is So Alarming
- Teenagers are putting their health at risk by getting pregnant before your body is ready.
- Teenagers are at higher risk of developing pregnancy complications.
- Babies born to teen mothers are not only born prematurely but have lower birth weight.
- Both these factors expose these babies to higher health risks.
- Unprotected sex can also cause sexually transmitted diseases in addition to an unplanned pregnancy.
- Statistics reveal that around 25 % of the teen moms get pregnant again for the second time within just 24 months of having the 1st baby.
- Children born to teen moms do not have a normal childhood.
- Girls who are born to teen moms are thrice as likely to end up being teen moms themselves and boys are twice as likely to end up in prison for criminal activities.
- Children born to teen moms are 5 times more likely to end up being poor and deprived, when compared to children who have both parents at home or are reared in a complete family.
Reasons Why Teenage Pregnancy Happens
- Parents are reluctant to discuss sex and its implications with their children. Such a restricted atmosphere at home embarrasses the teens and they refrain from asking any questions about sex or pregnancy that they may have. Finally the teens end up remaining quite ignorant about such matters and hence are exposed to an increased risk.
- Most of the teenagers think that they will not get pregnant despite repeated and unprotected sex.
- Many of the teenagers are unaware of contraceptive methods or safe sex practices.
- Many teens are under peer pressure and end up dating and indulging in sex just in order to get recognition from their peers. Teens that do not join the crowd may be considered as social outcasts and indulging in sex may be one of the ways to gain peer approval.
- Statistics show that teens that come from poor and deprived families may be more exposed to the risk of teenage pregnancy.
- There is a higher chance of teens getting exploited by older men. These older men may be either dating the teens or the teens may be raped by older men.
- Relation between increasing incidences of alcohol and drug abuse amongst teens and teen pregnancies cannot be overlooked. In fact many teen pregnancies could be a result of unprotected sex when drunk or under influence of drugs.
What is the Solution?
- Getting familiar with the problem and educating yourself about it is the first step in solving any problem. Teens should be provided sex education from reliable sources rather than getting half baked facts or untruthful information from their peers. They should be informed about dangers of unprotected sex and also about effective methods of contraception
- Familial atmosphere should be made appropriate and suitable for the teens to discuss their problems and clear their doubts.
- Abstinence from sex or waiting longer before rushing to have the first sexual encounter should be encouraged amongst teens and all necessary discussions on these matters should be initiated by a reliable person like the family doctor, mother, teacher or even a family friend. Whatever the mode of discussion, final aim should be to avoid any chance of teenage pregnancy.