Pregnant teenagers and teen moms
Virtually all of the growth of single-parent families in recent decades has been driven by an increase in births outside marriage. Divorce rates have leveled off or declined modestly since the early s and thus have not contributed to the rising proportion of children being raised by only one parent nor to the increase in child poverty and welfare dependence associated with the rise in single-parent families. Not all non-marital births are to teen-agers. In fact, 70 percent of all births outside marriage are to women over age For this reason, some argue that a focus on teens fails to address the real problem and that much more attention needs to be given to preventing childbearing, or raising marriage rates, among single women who have already entered their adult years. First, although a large proportion of non-marital births is to adult women, half of first non-marital births are to teens.
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In , a total of , babies were born to women aged 15—19 years, for a birth rate of This is another record low for U. Although reasons for the declines are not totally clear, evidence suggests these declines are due to more teens abstaining from sexual activity, and more teens who are sexually active using birth control than in previous years. Still, the U. Teen birth rates declined from to for most racial groups and for Hispanics. In , the birth rates of Hispanic teens
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NCBI Bookshelf. It is clear that being a child of a teenage mother often entails numerous risks: low birth weight, complications of the mother's pregnancy and delivery, and health problems associated with poor perinatal outcomes; greater risk of perinatal death; lower IQ and academic achievement later on, including a greater risk of repeating a grade; greater risk of socio-emotional problems; a greater risk of having a fatal accident before age one; and finally, a greater probability of starting one's own family at an early age. Although there are variations from study to study, most studies that survey a representative sample from a population that has had no special interventions and is of diverse socioeconomic makeup, and that do not control for SES or other factors, find that children of teen parents are at greater risk than children of older parents for a host of health, social and economic problems.
Metrics details. Risk factors for teenage pregnancy are linked to many factors, including a family history of teenage pregnancy. The original cohort consisted of 17, women born in Manitoba between April 1, and March 31, , who stayed in the province until at least their 20 th birthday, had at least one older sister, and had no missing values on key variables. The adjusted odds of becoming pregnant between ages 14 and 19 for teens with at least one older sister having a teenage pregnancy were 3.