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Alcohol and Teen Pregnancy
Statistics show that there is a link between alcohol and teen pregnancy. Teens who use alcohol have a higher risk for being involved in a teen pregnancy. This article has information on the correlation between alcohol and teen pregnancy.
Teens and their parents should know about the connections between alcohol use and teen pregnancy to help teens understand why they should not use alcohol or should get help for an alcohol problem.
There is a strong connection between teen alcohol and teen pregnancy. Teens who drink alcohol are more likely to be sexually active and to have unprotected sex than teens who do not use alcohol. They also may start having sex at an earlier age and have more sexual partners. This increases the risk of teen pregnancy as well as other potential consequences of teen sexual activity such as sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), suffering emotional damage, being in an abusive relationship, and feeling regret or sadness over their choices.
There are several possible reasons for the connection between alcohol and teen pregnancy:
There is also a link between drinking, sexual activity, and depression. Teens who engage in drinking and sexual activity seem to be more likely to suffer from depression, and depression may even influence their decisions to be involved in risky behaviors.
Some statistics from The National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy highlight the connection between alcohol and teen pregnancy:
Alcohol and teen pregnancy is a serious health risk for teen girls, who are more likely then older women to suffer from a variety of dangerous health problems due to pregnant. In addition, teen pregnancy, especially among high school age, unmarried teens, often interferes with a teen's success in life and increases the risk for feelings of depression and isolation, dropping out of high school, and living in poverty later in life. Using alcohol while pregnant increases the risk for health problems during the pregnancy, such as contracting an infection through unprotected sex, and may cause permanent damage to the developing baby.
Teen pregnancy does not just affect teen girls, since boys who get girls pregnant are legally responsible for helping to support and raise the baby.
Teens should be aware of the risks of alcohol and sexual activity, and that drinking increases the chances of teen pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, and other consequences of sexual activity. Parents can help their teens by:
The National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, "Teen Pregnancy, Substance Use, and Other Risky Behaviors" [online]
Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD), "Statistics" [online]
March of Dimes, "Teenage Pregnancy" [online]
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 4Parents.gov, "Dealing with Risky Behaviors and Other Challenges" [online]
Related Article: Alcohol and Dating Violence >>