New studies have reported that morning-after pill sales are up, yet teen sex is down, undergoing a significant drop in the last twenty five years. The concepts might seem contradicting, but the Centre for Disease Control (CDC) have found valid explanations and accurate statistics on teengers’ sexual activity of today.
The survey of 2,225 teenagers between the ages of 15 to 19 years old, have come up with new reports on contraceptives, sexual activity and teenage pregnancy that differ vastly from findings in 1988, when the National Survey of Family Growth conducted a similar study.
The results showed that 1 out of 5 teenage girls have used the morning after pill, which is vastly more frequent than the 1 in 12 that was reported a decades ago. Looser regulations for acquiring the emergency pill to prevent pregnancy could be credited for its increased use, along with the fact that they can be purchased over-the-counter without prescription and prices range between $35 and $50.
The morning-after pill reduces the chance of pregnancy after unprotected sex by 90% if used within the first 72 hours. While condoms have remained the most popular form of contraceptives among teens and the sales for birth control pills have also not seen any change among the years, it seems the morning-after pill sale have been going up.
The statistic is uplifting as it severely decreases the chance of unwanted teenage pregnancies, but it brings to attention that “teens, like adults, often are not very good at contraceptives”, according to Bill Albert from the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy. It paints the picture that more teenagers are resorting to sexual activity without the use of any contraception if they don’t have available, instead of second guessing it.
Regardless, teenage pregnancy is down with 27 in 1,000, much lower than the historic record of 96 in 1,000 that was in the late 80’s.
The same study also confirmed that teenage sex has also seen a downfall, with the numbers remaining steady at 45% for both boys and girls who engage in sexual activity, compared to statistics from 2011 to 2013 where 44% teen girls and 47% teen boys reportedly had sex at least once.
The findings concluded that teenagers are becoming more aware of the importance of protection and know the risks of STDs, which has driven the number of teenage pregnancy down. However, proper sexual education is still important and should never cease in order to see the numbers moving as low as possible, and better inform today’s youth about the importance of contraceptives in those highly significant years of their lives.
Image source: theguardian.com