Teen Pregnancy

November 22, 2015

Kristen McIntosh

PSY304 Child and Adolescent Development 

Week 2 Journal


Did you know that a sexually active teen that does not use protection has a 90 percent chance of becoming pregnant within one year? The United States has the highest teen pregnancy rate of the Western industrialized world. Studies show that 80 percent of teen pregnancies are unplanned. Did you know that teen pregnancy is the number one reason teen girls quit school? Only one-third of teenage mothers will graduate high school, and not much above one percent of those mothers will earn a college degree before they turn 30.

The effect of teen fathers to the pregnancy is comparable to those observed among teen mothers. Teen fathers are less likely to finish high school, resulting in employment challenges that put them at a financial disadvantage than that of an adult father. In many cases, teen fathers do not marry the mother, which results in an unstable family structure. Children who do not live with their fathers are more likely to live among poverty than when both parents live in the home. A father’s absence has been linked to depression and anxiety in the mother which affects the pregnancy because the mother’s psychological well-being is decreased. Maternal mental health plays a vital role in the development of the child.

Pregnancy during developmental adolescent years comes with risks and negative consequences. A teen mother must give up normal social and physical interaction with her peers because of the tremendous demands associated with the pregnancy and parenting of an infant. Studies show that teen mothers are at an increased risk for delayed educational opportunities, and overall decreased intellectual development. Teen mothers often have a reduced or underdeveloped sense of their own self. They are also at a greater risk for depression and anxiety disorders.

An infant’s development is potentially at risk when the mom is a teenager because the mother is still developing herself. As a result, the mother will need to eat an additional serving of each food group to ensure sufficient nourishment to her baby than that of a pregnant adult. One of the biggest risks for teen mothers is postponing prenatal care, or not receiving any at all. Babies born to adolescent mothers are already at risk for being born prematurely, so it is important to have the proper prenatal care to sufficiently measure the development of the baby.

Family has a positive influence on the outcomes for the children of teen parents when the teenage father is married to the teenage mother. This results in a more positive home environment where there is love and support conducive to healthy development for the child, and provides positive long-term outcomes for the parents too. Reduced education among teen parents influence the children in a negative manner because of the socioeconomic disadvantage it creates. However, the ability to later further education provides a positive outcome for the teenage parents and the child.

The Refuge Pregnancy Center located at 1307 Milstead Avenue, Conyers, Georgia 30012 is a local resource for teens to get help regarding teen pregnancy. Their phone number is 770-922-5939. The Office of Adolescent Health is a wide-ranging resource for help regarding teen pregnancy. They are located at 1101 Wootton Parkway, Suite 700, Rockville, Maryland 20852. Their phone number is 1-240-453-2846, and their email is oah.gov@hhs.gov.




Mollborn, S., & Lovegrove, P. (2012). How Teenage Fathers Matter for Children: Evidence From the ECLS-B. Retrieved November 22, 2015, from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3172315/

Sex, Pregnancy and STDs. (n.d.). Retrieved November 22, 2015, from http://nationalsafeplace.org/safe-place-teens/sex-pregnancy/

Sieving, R., & Bush Stevens, A. (n.d.). Adolescent Psychosocial Development: Implications for Pregnancy and Prenatal Care. Retrieved November 24, 2015, from http://www.epi.umn.edu/let/pubs/img/NMPA_23-29.pdf

Teenage Births: Outcomes for Young Parents and their Children. (2008, December 1). Retrieved November 22, 2015, from http://www.scaany.org/documents/teen_pregnancy_dec08.pdf

Teen Pregnancy Statistics. (n.d.). Retrieved November 22, 2015, from http://www.teenhelp.com/teen-pregnancy/teen-pregnancy-statistics.html

The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy. (n.d.). Retrieved November 22, 2015, from https://thenationalcampaign.org/data/landing

The Real Teen Mom: Alarming Statistics. (n.d.). Retrieved November 22, 2015, from http://www.drphil.com/articles/print/?ArticleID=684

Welton, R. (2013, October 24). How Does Teenage Pregnancy Affect the Physical Development of the Baby? Retrieved November 22, 2015, from http://www.livestrong.com/article/165291-how-does-teenage-pregnancy-affect-the-physical-development-of-the-baby/



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