Parenting Today Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

teenage pregnancy on the family of the effected girl. In addition to that, this paper also highlights the prevailing rates of teen pregnancy in the U.S.A. And the adverse consequences of adolescence pregnancy. Furthermore, the strategies to prevent teenage pregnancy have also been discussed by this paper.

Setting the Scene

Teenagers are forced to confront a crisis because of an unintended pregnancy, which in most cases is an unwanted pregnancy. The unmarried adolescents, who are pregnant, have to make a number of complex decisions. These decisions include choosing between aborting and giving birth, and choosing between raising the baby by themselves or placing them for an adaption. Simultaneously, other decision in relation to school, work and interpersonal relationships are to be taken by the affected teenagers. (Wirkus & Maxwell, 2010)

Another important decision that the teens confront is to opt the manner in which they will discuss this issue with their parents. Most of the parents show supportive behaviour in relation to the daughter who is pregnant or a son who got a girl pregnant. But others may react in a violent manner and may lose all their control. Some parents, on the other hand, do not show how they feel and take time to absorb the news. Some others give an instant reaction and express their feelings very loudly. Parents may also try to be sensitive to the feelings of the affected teen and in some cases they take charge of the situation and tell the child what to do and how to tackle the circumstances. (Wirkus & Maxwell, 2010)

When I came across the news that my 17-year-old girl was pregnant, I was not able to exercise my thinking ability in an appropriate manner. I was experiencing a strong shock but later I regained the control over my feelings and I decided to support my young girl and help her getting through the difficult situation. This is because I believe that sometimes people come closer to each other and strengthen their bonds with the help of a difficult situation. Sometimes, as they confront a difficult situation families are able to identify the 'unconditional love, support, kindness, forgiveness, acceptance, teamwork, and optimism' that exists between the members of the family. (Wirkus & Maxwell, 2010)

In order to help my daughter get through this situation and to ensure that her health might not be endangered, I will approach a health care provider or a clinic to get appropriate and regular parental care for my daughter. I will also ensure that she is having a nutritious and balanced diet. As such a situation may exercise high pressure over the teenagers, I will make sure that my daughter stays away from smoking and does not deploy any drugs until and unless they are recommended by a health care physician. I will also ensure that my daughter gets appropriate education in relation to such issues so that such incidents may be avoided in the future. (Wirkus & Maxwell, 2010)

Part 2: Doing the Research


Teenage Pregnancy Rates

There has been an increase in the teenage birth rates in the United States. In 2007 these rates rose significantly second time in a row. There was, however, a consistent decrease in these rates from the year 1991 to the year 2005. The teenage pregnancy rates in the United States of America, as indicated by a number of studies, are very high as compared to the rates that prevail in most of the developed countries. The high rate of teen pregnancy is an important concern for the officials as well as the effected families because the teenage mothers as well as their babies confront elevated rate of risk in relation to their health. In addition to that, the opportunities to build a stable and secure future are also destroyed due to teenage pregnancy. (Chen & Wen et al., 2007)

Various ethnic groups have varying rates of teenage pregnancy. The highest decline in the teenage pregnancy rates has been experienced by Black women since the year 1991. However, despite this decline their teen pregnancy rates remain higher than that of the white women. There has also been an evident decline in the pregnancy rate among the Latinas. Inspite of this evident decline the Hispanic girls have highest teenage pregnancy rates. (Office of Adolescent Health United States of America, 2014)

The graph below indicates the prevailing teenage pregnancy rates in the United States of America. It also highlights the teen pregnancy rates that prevail in various ethnic groups. The graph represents the teen pregnancy rates that prevailed from the year 1990 to the year 2012. (Office of Adolescent Health United States of America, 2014) These are the birth-rates per thousand females, who aged between fifteen years to nineteen years, and belonged to different ethnic groups:

(Office of Adolescent Health United States of America, 2014)

As evident from the above graph, there has been a considerable decline in the teen pregnancy rates among the black woman, which declined from 116.2 in the year 1990 to 43.9 in the year 2012, but these rates are still higher than the rates that prevailed among white woman. The rates among white woman declined from 42.5 in the year 1990 to 20.5 in the year 2012. The rates that prevailed among Hispanic, which declined from 100.3 in the year 1990 to 46.3 in the year 2012, are the highest as compared to all other ethnic groups. In addition to that, there has been an evident decline in the overall teen pregnancy rates that prevail in the United States of America. As indicated by the above graph, these rates declined from 59.9 in the year 1990 to 29.4 in the year 2012. (Office of Adolescent Health United States of America, 2014)

The teenage pregnancy rates also vary according to the geographical location in the United States of America. As indicated by a number of studies, evident variation exists in the rates of adolescent childbearing on the basis of geographical locations throughout the United States. In the 2010, it was observed that the lowest teen birth rates were reported to prevail in the Northeast, whereas, these rates were observed to be highest in the states that are situated in the southern part of the country. (Office of Adolescent Health United States of America, 2014)

Consequences of Teenage Pregnancy

There are various health, educational, finance and emotional consequences of teen pregnancy. In addition to that, it also has a negative impact on the future of both mother and child. (East, 1999) Some of these consequences are listed below:

Health: Some of the effected teens attempt to hide their pregnancy from their parents and relatives, these attempts, as a result, lead towards infanticide. As most of the teens confront unpleasant shock due to their pregnancy, they have a tendency to indulge in unhealthy practices. These practices range from intake of poor diet, heavy smoking, consumption of alcohol, and usage of dangerous drugs, all of these unhealthy habits have a negative impact on the health of the baby and the mother. In addition to that, about one-third of the teenage mothers do not receive appropriate prenatal care. Furthermore, an increased risk of premature labor, and other hazardous medical conditions such as anemia, and high blood pressure, is also confronted by the teenage mothers. (Siegberg & Nilsson, 1987)

It has also been indicated by a number of studies that the babies who are born to the teenage mothers usually have a low weight at the time of birth, this as a result may lead towards a number of diseases including:

Respiratory distress syndrome

Bleeding in the brain

Loss of vision

And severe intestinal problems. (East, 1999)

In addition to that, it has also been indicated by various studies that the teen mothers generally suffer from sexually transmitted diseases. As a result, they have a high tendency to transmit these diseases to their babies. Furthermore, these diseases may lead towards the death of the mother or may even cause the death of the infant as well. Apart from that, the infant mortality rate that prevails among the children who are born to teenage is fifty percent greater than the infant mortality rates that prevail among the children who are born to older women. (Siegberg & Nilsson, 1987)

Education: As indicated by a number of the studies, only 70% of the girls effected from teen pregnancy may eventually graduate from high school. This rate is quite lower than the graduation rates that prevail among the childless peers of the teenage mother, which is 94%. The percentage of teenage mothers, on the other hand, who have a college degree is very low, only 1.5%. Furthermore, the children born to teenage parents confront various problems in their academic life ranging from lower intellectual problems and poor academic performance to unpleasant behavioral issues. In addition to that, children of teenage parents have a low probability of graduating from high school. (Siegberg & Nilsson, 1987)

Financial: The rate of teenage mother living…

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