By Erin Monahan – June 13, 2017
Teen pregnancy is life changing. While most teen pregnancies are unplanned, even a planned pregnancy has risks and potential complications. While teen pregnancy rates have declined over the past 10 years, 22 of 1000 high school students still get pregnant each year, according to a report on the website Pregnant Teen Help. Nearly 1 million babies are born to teens each year, including 18- and 19-year-olds, and not all of them are ready for or want the responsibility.
Loss of Education
An estimated 70 percent of pregnant teens drop out of school, according to Pregnant Teen Help, and only half of those young women have jobs. Reasons for dropping out of high school include physical problems, such as morning sickness, and emotional problems, such as body image embarrassment, a fear of bullying or sexual harassment.
Compared to non-teen mothers, teen moms have higher rates of medical conditions such as high blood pressure or preeclampsia, reports Aetna InteliHealth. Some issues are caused by teens getting less prenatal care due to low income, embarrassment or trying to hide the pregnancy. Teens also have higher rates of premature birth and low birth weight of babies. Pregnant teens also tend to suffer from anemia. To avoid these problems, teen moms should see a doctor regularly, eat well, omit alcohol and drugs and quit smoking.
Teen moms have a greater likelihood of ending up on welfare, according to VAhealth. Additionally, the cycle will possibly continue through the next generation, as the daughters of teen mothers are 22 percent more likely than other teens to become teen moms, too, according to “Kids Having Kids: A Robin Hood Foundation Special Report on the Costs of Adolescent Childbearing.”