Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Risk Factors of Teenage Pregnancy

As discussed in our introduction teenage pregnancy is on the rise. It is an issue now talked about everywhere. One of the discussions on teenage pregnancy focus on what the factors that cause teenage pregnancy are. There is compelling data that suggest there are several strong factors that lead to an increased risk of getting pregnant as a teenager. These risks come from a teenager’s environment and background, as well as individual behavior of a teenager. It is important to note that this research does not say that every teenage girl with these risk factors will get pregnant. The research merely shows that these factors have lead to and increase in teen pregnancy rates. They are often broken down into two categories. Environmental, and Individual factors.
    The most studied factor is that of geographic location. Researchers found a correlation between the neighborhoods that teenagers live in and their risk in getting pregnant. It was found in a study by the American Medical Association that” Teens who live in neighborhoods that have high levels of poverty, low levels of education, and high residential turnover are at a higher risk for teen pregnancy”(AMA,7). A similar study found that family factors also contribute to the rising rate of teen pregnancy. These include the income level of the family, as well as the family structure. Teens that were born to teenage parents are also more likely to become teenage parents themselves.
    There are also factors that are individual girls, but are harder to study. There has been research that suggests that low self-esteem correlates to having sex earlier and getting pregnant at a younger age. This is harder to study then where you live as a risk factor. Another individual factor is school performance. Students that do poorer in school tend not to be future orientated. This can lead to an increased risk for becoming pregnant as a teenager.
    Rebecca, Becca, Courtney, Charda, and Hiroyo
Thought provoking questions:
1) What can be done to curb the link between these factors and the rates of teen pregnancy?
2) Has there been enough research about teen pregnancies that fall outside of these risk factors?
3) Who do we make aware of the factors? Teen? Parents? Girls? Boys?
4) How do we educate people on the risk factors?

Sources
Chang, Philip . "National Innitiative on Teen Pregnancy ." American Medical Association Journal . (2003): 6-30. Print.

9 comments:

  1. I think that the factors associated with rates of teen pregnancy are extremely interesting because they show trends that at times can seem like they are on too much of a macro level to deal with. While I do think that sex education is extremely important to help curtail these trends, I also think that it is imperative to look at these trends from a macro level as well. For instance, why is it that poverty or low income neighborhoods are linked so strongly to high rates of teen pregnancies? I am reading the book "Growing up Fast" for our novel assignment, and overall is tells the stories of several teen moms - all living in the town of Pittsfield MA. Interestingly, the first chapter is entirely dedicated to describing life in Pittsfield, particularly the problem that corporate take-over caused in the area, as it put a majority of the townspeople out of work. As she describes the conditions, people are living in poverty or on low incomes, and the schools are slipping in to the cracks. However, the most poignant thing is that she sets up all of the girls stories by talking about their environment and describing their surroundings. It showed me how important Nurture is (considering the nature vs. nurture debate), and one girl made this particularly clear when she said that the town is sooo boring, there's nothing for teenagers to do but have sex - that's why she thinks the pregnancy rates are so high. To me, this points a macro problem of state and federal governments supporting towns such as Pittsfield that have been hit with employment or other issues - quickly sending them in to devastation. I think that students would benefit enormously from public school support and improvements. With more school funding, after-school programs, extra-curricular activities, clubs, community service projects, etc. would provide teenagers with not only with more to do/fill their time, but with more perspective on life and potential future opportunities.
    Overall, I think I just feel like these trends and links can be addressed on an even more macro level than sex education if funding and aid can support communities such as these to provide teenagers with more life choices and educational/beneficial activities!

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  2. I had some problem with my first pregnancy, i wanted to be pregnant and have my first baby, buy my husband had erectil dysfunction problem, so we decided to buy viagra and after that he turned very strong and could get powerful erection after this medical treatment. Thank to this i have two litle and beautiful girls.

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  5. Where did you find your info about the AMA and the Innitiative on Teen Pregnancy by Philip Chang b/c I am unable to find that source anywhere...

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