Sunday, September 04, 2016
Teen Pregnancy Rate Drops (But Not Due To Abstinence)
The chart above is from a report in The Journal of Adolescent Health. It shows that since 2007 the rate of both teen pregnancies and teen births have been dropping. That's a good thing, but what's is causing the drop?
Were the "abstinence only" folks right? Is their message finally starting to sink in with teens? NO. The study also found that the percentage of teens having sex has remained constant. The percentage of teens having sex is the same as it was in 2007.
Is the drop in teen births due to more use of abortion? Again NO. It seems that the abortion rate has also been falling.
So, what is causing the drop in teen pregnancies and births? It's exactly what public health officials have been saying for years. It's a wider availability of effective contraceptive methods. If you provide effective contraceptive and teach teens how to use them, the rate of teen pregnancies and teen births will go down.
We shouldn't have needed a study to show us that, since common sense will say the same thing. But for those hard-headed people among us, we now have a scientific study to prove it.
NOTE -- And in a back-handed way the study also shoots down the notion that the wider availability of contraceptive methods will cause more teens to have sex. As reported above, the percentage of teens having sex has remained constant.