Teen Pregnancy News

The good news about teen pregnancy is that overall rates are dropping. About 300,000 babies were born to mothers ages 15 to 19 in 2011, which is a record low rate. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) attributes this success to lower levels of sexual activity and higher use of birth control among teens. But this teen birth rate is still higher than in most other developed countries.

According to the CDC, teenage mothers have higher rates of incarceration, health problems and unemployment later in life than women who wait to have children. They also tend to perform more poorly in school, and about 50 percent of teenage mothers don't graduate from high school.

Preventing Teen Pregnancy

The teenage years can be a confusing time. Teens are still learning to understand their changing bodies and new feelings that they have, while their brains are still developing. Many may feel pressure from friends and others to engage in sexual activities. During this time, parents play a key role in modifying teen behavior by being open and communicating with their children.

The approach that parents take may differ from family to family, but simply talking about sex and giving kids information can help. Research indicates that when parents talk with their teens about sex, pregnancy, relationships and birth control, the children tend to delay having sex, have less sex or use birth control if they do have sex.

Health care providers also play an important role in preventing teen pregnancy. They accomplish this by making their clinics teen-friendly and encouraging reproductive health visits for children when they enter their teenage years. Doctors can also advise parents on how to talk to children about sex.

SOURCE: U.S. Centers for Disease Control

Sources:About Teen Pregnancy, CDC, 2013, http://www.cdc.gov/TeenPregnancy/AboutTeenPreg.htm, Accessed 8/27/13.Parent and Guardian Resources, CDC, 2013, http://www.cdc.gov/TeenPregnancy/Parents.htm, Accessed 8/27/13.Health Care Providers and Teen Pregnancy Prevention, CDC, 2013, http://www.cdc.gov/teenpregnancy/HealthCareProviders.htm, Accessed 8/27/13.
Date Posted
Article Title
11/1/2017
10/3/2017
Americans' Health Woes May Have Swayed 2016 Presidential Election

Rural counties with fewer doctors and high teen birth rates shifted to Trump, study shows

9/22/2017
More Teen Dads?

Report finds number of teen moms stays stable while it goes up for males

6/30/2017
Teen Birth Rate Drops Again to All-Time Low: CDC

Preterm deliveries and births to older moms are up, report finds

5/30/2017
U.S. Teen Births Hit Historic Low: CDC

Data from 2014 also shows that more older women are having children, study finds

4/27/2017
Repeat Teen Births Still a Problem in United States: CDC

Too few teens use the most effective birth control after having a first baby

4/18/2017
Marijuana and Pregnancy

Marijuana use up in pregnant teens, study finds.

4/17/2017
Pot Smoking Common Among Pregnant Teens: Survey

Doctors voice concerns about harms to developing fetus

12/14/2016
Birth Defects From Zika More Far-Reaching Than Thought

Studies found greater prevalence than believed, more neurological problems cropping up months after birth

11/9/2016
Premature Calcium Deposits May Trigger Premature Births

Mother's water can break too soon, researchers report

9/28/2016
U.S. Teen Births Hit Another Record Low: CDC

Less sex, more contraception is the 'magic' formula, experts say

9/12/2016
For Teens With Leukemia, Pregnancy Tests Often Neglected

Risk of chemo-related birth defects needs to be considered, researchers say

8/31/2016
3 Steps to Lower a Woman's Risk of Premature Birth

Study finds there's lots mothers-to-be can do to help ensure they deliver at full-term

8/25/2016
'Pretend Mommy' Program Doesn't Deter Teen Pregnancy

Schools should think twice about sending girls home with simulator baby, study suggests

8/17/2016
Meds May Curb Risky Behaviors for Kids With ADHD

Study found drug abuse, STDs and injuries were lower among teens who take meds

8/2/2016
Task Force: Routine Genital Herpes Screening Not Recommended

Unless someone has symptoms, testing offers little benefit because the sexually transmitted disease has no cure

8/2/2016
Study Dashes Millennials' Reputation as Hookup Generation

Only people born in the 1920s reported having less sex between the ages of 20 and 24

7/6/2016
Don't Blame the Media for Teen Sex, Study Says

Parents and peers have far more influence on sexual behavior

5/5/2016
Some Teen Girls Coerced Into Pregnancy: Study

Small review finds high schoolers as young as 14 have had boyfriends who control their reproductive choices

4/28/2016
Teen Birth Rate at Record Low in U.S.

They're delaying sex, using more effective birth control, CDC researcher says

2/16/2016
Study: You Can Predict Which Male Teens Will Live With Their Future Kids

Beliefs about risky sex, pregnancy, birth control foretell what kind of fathers they will be, researchers contend

1/25/2016
Rate of Severe Stomach Birth Defect Increased Over Two Decades: CDC

Gastroschisis, a hole in the abdominal wall, more common in babies born to teen mothers

12/27/2015
The Younger the Mother, the Worse Her Health at Midlife: Study

Those who waited until at least 25 fared better at 40, researchers say

12/23/2015
U.S. Births Up, Teen and Preterm Deliveries Down: CDC

Positive trends mean healthier babies, doctors say

12/21/2015
Study Touts Benefits of Group Prenatal Care

Spending time with other pregnant women, sharing experiences may help young mothers-to-be

7/1/2015
Obese Teens Less Likely to Use Birth Control

Heavy adolescent girls at greater risk for unintended pregnancy, study shows

10/1/2014
Free, Long-Acting Contraceptives May Greatly Reduce Teen Pregnancy Rate

Study findings also showed abortion rate was three-quarters lower than the national norm in this age group

9/29/2014
Pediatricians Endorse IUDs, Implants for Teen Birth Control

These methods are more reliable than condoms, birth control pills, experts say

8/20/2014
Teen Birth Rate Has Dropped Dramatically in Last Two Decades: CDC

4 million fewer births attributed to less sex, more contraception, but U.S. rate still higher than comparable nations

5/29/2014
Having Babies May Be 'Contagious' Among Long-Time Friends

Women tend to get pregnant soon after friends they've known since high school give birth, study finds

2/10/2014
Teen Pregnancy Rates Much Higher for Girls With Serious Mental Illness: Study

But it's not clear from Canadian study if there's a direct connection

12/5/2013
U.S. Pregnancy Rates Continue to Fall

Increase seen only among women over 30; fewer teen births reported

11/21/2013
Health Disparities Persist in America: Report

CDC finds race, sex, education, location and wealth among key factors in these inequalities

10/17/2013
Children of Teen Mothers Don't Have Mental Disadvantage, Study Suggests

But language delay was noted in kids born to youngest moms

9/6/2013
More U.S. Women Having Kids in Their 30s and 40s: Report

Meanwhile, births among teens and women in early 20s fall to historic lows

6/28/2013
U.S. Women Delay Motherhood, Teen Births Historically Low: CDC

Preterm births, low birth weight babies declined in 2011, report says

5/23/2013
U.S. Teen Birth Rate Plummets: Report

Since 1991, rate has dropped by nearly half, health officials find

5/9/2013
Pregnancy Adds Challenge for Teens Treated for Drug Abuse, Report Says

Substance-abuse programs may improve young women's education, income prospects

4/19/2013
Teen Births May Increase Risk of Obesity Later in Life

Having a child before age 20 linked to 32 percent greater odds of obesity, study finds

4/1/2013
Consensual Sex Typically Doesn't Begin Before Teen Years, Study Finds

Surveys find sexual intercourse, pregnancy more common at 14 and older

3/25/2013
Teen Moms More Likely to Have Been Neglected, Abused

Study found childbirth rate 5 times higher than national average

3/20/2013
How Healthy Is Your County?

People living in the least healthy areas of U.S. twice as likely to die early, report says

2/27/2013
U.S. Teen Birth Rates Highest in Rural Areas, Research Shows

Major cities had biggest decline in teen childbearing over the last 2 decades

2/25/2013
Teen Pregnancy-Prevention Program Works, Study Says

Youth development is an essential component

2/11/2013
Teen Births Hit Record Low, CDC Reports

Preterm and low-birth-weight babies also down, researchers add

11/26/2012
Give Teens Access to Emergency Contraception, Pediatricians Say

American Academy of Pediatrics encourages physicians to discuss methods such as Plan B

10/31/2012
Poor Reading Skills Linked to Teen Pregnancy Risk

Preteen girls with below-average literacy twice as likely to give birth in teen years, study finds

10/23/2012
Hospitals Should Test More Teen Girls for Pregnancy, Study Suggests

Tests are recommended for girls who have abdominal pain or are receiving X-rays, CT scans

10/15/2012
HPV Shot Doesn't Encourage Sexual Activity in Girls: Study

No increase seen in STDs, pregnancy or birth control counseling

8/24/2012
Couch-Potato Kids Are Top U.S. Child Health Problem: Poll

Obesity, tobacco use also ranked high among community concerns