Advanced Search
Current and Breaking News for Professionals, Consumers and Media



Click here to learn how to advertise on this site and for ad rates.

Teen Health Author: Guttmacher Institute Last Updated: Nov 29, 2012 - 7:11:02 AM



Teen Births at Record Low Thanks to Improvements in Contraceptive Use

By Guttmacher Institute
Apr 12, 2012 - 9:49:08 AM



Email Newsletter icon, E-mail Newsletter icon, Email List icon, E-mail List icon Sign up for our Ezine
For Email Marketing you can trust


Email this article
 Printer friendly page
(HealthNewsDigest.com) - The U.S. teen birthrate declined 9% between 2009 and 2010 to a record low of 34 births per 1,000 teens aged 15–19, according to final data (released in preliminary form in late 2011) from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Teen birthrates have now declined for nearly two decades and the 2010 rate represents a 44% drop from 1991.The CDC notes that, if teen birthrates had remained at the 1991 level, there would have been an estimated 3.4 million additional teen births during 1992–2010.

The most recent decline in teen births can be linked almost exclusively to improvements in teens’ contraceptive use, according to data from another CDC survey, the National Survey of Family Growth (NSFG). The NSFG interviewed a nationally representative sample of teens from June 2006 to June 2008, and again from July 2008 to July 2010. While there was no significant change over those years in the overall proportion of females aged 15–19 who were sexually experienced or engaging in sexual activity, there was a dramatic shift in teen contraceptive use.

Analyzing the NSFG data, Guttmacher researchers found an increase in teens’ use of any contraceptive method, in their use of the most effective methods and in their use of dual methods (condoms and hormonal methods simultaneously). Specifically, hormonal contraceptives were used by 37% of sexually active teens in 2006–2008 and by 47% in 2008–2010, while use of highly effective long-acting reversible contraceptive methods such as the IUD increased from 1.4% to 4.4%. Dual method use rose from 16% to 23%.

Anecdotal reports indicate that recent changes in medical recommendations that allow teens and young adults to access hormonal contraceptives without a pelvic exam or Pap test have made it easier for them to start—and continue—using these methods. There has also been a change in the medical community’s thinking around the use of IUDs, which is now seen as a “first-line” option for teens who are sexually active and want to delay childbearing for several years. Additionally, fewer teens reported that they were trying to become pregnant, and the economic recession may have increased teens’ motivation to protect themselves against unwanted childbearing.

In sum, teens are making the decision to be more effective contraceptive users, and their actions appear to be paying off in lower birthrates. However, despite the strong evidence of improved contraceptive use as a driver of these positive trends, attacks on contraception—including attacks on contraceptive coverage under private health plans and publicly subsidized family planning programs—are increasing in the political arena.

State-level changes

Even as the teen birthrate has declined dramatically, state variations and ethnic disparities have persisted. In 2010, 14 states and the District of Columbia had teen birthrates of 40 or more births per 1,000 teens aged 15–19, compared with the national rate of 34.3 per 1,000. Higher teen birthrates persist in the South and Southwest and among Hispanic and non-Hispanic black teens, with some of the regional variation reflecting the population composition by race and ethnicity.

Variations in state policies about sex education may also play a role. Methodologically rigorous studies have not found rigid abstinence-only-until-marriage programs to be effective, either in deterring teens from having sex or positively impacting their behavior when they do become sexually active. In contrast, a substantial number of comprehensive sex education programs were shown by such studies to be effective—in delaying the initiation of sex, reducing the frequency of sex, reducing the number of sexual partners and increasing condom or contraceptive use.

###

For advertising and promotion on HealthNewsDigest.com please contact Mike McCurdy: [email protected] or 877-634-9180
HealthNewsDigest.com is syndicated worldwide, and our content is free to all media. www.HealthNewsDigest.com

Top of Page

HealthNewsDigest.com

Teen Health
Latest Headlines


+ Teens And Tires: What They Don’t Know Can Hurt Them
+ Schedule Your Preteen’s Health Check-up
+ Researchers Identify Potential Risk Factors for Urinary Tract Infections in Young Girls
+ A Survival Guide to Parenting Teens
+ Tips on Preparing Teens for College
+ To Help Keep Teen Drivers Safe, Focus On The Learner Period, New Research Finds
+ 8 Ways to Help Your Teen Survive a Breakup (Video)
+ FDA's Read the Label Youth Outreach Campaign Empowers 'Tweens' to Make Healthy Choices
+ Younger Teens Still Account for 1 in 4 Teen Births
+ Stronger Adolescents and Teens Have Less Risk of Diabetes, Heart Disease



Contact Us | Job Listings | Help | Site Map | About Us
Advertising Information | HND Press Release | Submit Information | Disclaimer

Site hosted by Sanchez Productions