Teenage Pregnancy Statistics
Teenage pregnancy is defined as pregnancy of females under the age of 19. It is believed to be a health concern in the US because teen births are associated with a number of social factors, including:
- Lower educational attainment
- Lower incomes for both the teenage mother and the father
- A higher rate of welfare reliance
- A higher rate of state parenting interventions
- Higher instances of substance abuse
US Teen Pregnancy Rates are Improving:
The annual cost of teenage pregnancy to the US economy is thought to be around $7billion. However, the statistics have been steadily improving over the last decade. Here are some of the key facts:
- According to the National Centre for Health Statistics (NCHS), teenage pregnancy statistics in the USA have been steadily declining since 2008.
- Experts attribute the improved statistics for teen pregnancy to better education, more readily available birth control, and cultural change.
- The US teen pregnancy rate in 2015 was 22 births per 1000 females aged between 15 and 19 years old. This is 8% less than the 2014 rate. 2016’s statistics are yet to be released.
- There’s still a way to go, though. The US still has the highest teen pregnancy rate when compared to Canada and Britain.
Remember that Teen Pregnancy Stats Don’t Paint the Whole Picture:
The picture painted above is somewhat grim. But, remember it is derived only from statistics. In sharing the statistics I am not trying to say that all teenage parents are uneducated, or poor, or drug users. Only that the statistics suggest these factors are more prevalent among those that give birth before the age of 19. However, the statistics do not tell the individual stories. Many young mothers go on to earn college degrees. I know a number of teenage mothers who do a wonderful job raising their children. Many make very positive contributions to society. While teenage pregnancy is a social issue in this country, it is not a reason to judge or condemn teenagers who become pregnant. They need support and guidance to make good choices.
However, the statistics do not tell the individual stories. Many young mothers go on to earn college degrees. Thousands of teenage mothers do a wonderful job raising their children. Often, young mothers make very positive contributions to society. While teenage pregnancy is a social issue in this country, it is not a reason to judge or condemn teenagers who become pregnant. They need support and guidance to make good choices.
Are you a pregnant teen? Or the parent of a pregnant teen? Check out our support and advice for parents and teenagers here.
Many teenagers consider having a termination but worry that an abortion now could affect their chances of having a baby later in life. Get the facts on how abortion affects future pregnancies here.
If you think you might be pregnant, click here to read about the earliest signs and symptoms of pregnancy.