1. Adolescent age is nationally recognized as 10 years old to 19 years old and is defined as “the phase of life between childhood and adulthood” (World Health Organization, n.d.). Adolescent pregnancy is classified as a high-risk situation as there are various risk factors and/or precursors. Some of these include substance abuse, lack of education regarding safe sex practices, and even sexual abuse/trafficking. It is important that they adolescents are appropriately educated on the risks and possible future complications regarding teen pregnancies. Studies shows that adolescent mothers are more “likely to live in poverty and face unemployment” and adolescent fathers “have been found to earn less income and have higher levels of unemployment” (Querin & Migliaccio, 2020).
There are plentiful resources in the state of Arizona for topics relating to teen pregnancy. One of them is the Arizona Children’s Association that has a program for empowering young parents. Their program focuses of pregnant or parenting young adults aged 16-20. They provide a lot of counseling resources such as education, housing, and parenting. Another great resource is The House of El-Elyon which supports pregnant teens and young mothers from the ages of 12-18. They do so by providing a 24/7 live-in group care home program which allows people to live there and gain mentorship, educations, and much more.
According to the CDC, Arizona teen pregnancy rates from 2014 to 2020 have decreased by 13.3 births per 1000 live births between the ages of 15 and 19 (CDC, 2022). There are variety of reasons as to why it has decreased since then and that is because of the access to resources and increased awareness of safe sex practices.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022, February 25). Stats of the state – teen birth rates. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved February 1, 2023, from https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/pressroom/sosmap/teen-births/teenbirths.htm
2. Teen pregnancy has several risk factors. At the onset of puberty, the body goes through the most dramatic changes. Some cultural practices and lack of parental guidance can influence teens to become pregnant. In some instances, if the father is not in the picture or the lack of attention from parents, teenagers will seek this love elsewhere, causing them to experience sex (Querin et al., 2020). Other factors include poverty, lack of education, depression, previously pregnant or abortion, and fewer publicly funded family clinics nearby.
Valleywise health offers help to teen mothers. It states that every mother should be confident and stress-free as possible. They offer services that provide support throughout the entire pregnancy journey, labor, and postpartum. They offer community connection, outside resources, and counseling. They have pregnancy classes mothers can attend, and they offer full medical care. They want to help young moms have a positive experience and become wonderful parents.
Arizona Department of Child Safety has several resources for teen health and pregnancy. Resources include health insurance, mental health, planned parenthood, childcare resources, pregnancy services, and a few others.
In the past ten years in the state of Arizona, teen pregnancy has decreased over the years. In Mohave County, teen pregnancy has decreased over the past ten years. The decrease can be due to more accessible access to birth control. Teens are possibly practicing abstinence. It could also be due to the many resources being offered to help teen mothers.
3. Adolescent pregnancy poses serious concerns for both the mother and the child. The young mother is at risk of developing various health conditions, including preeclampsia and hypertension. Such a young mother can also experience postpartum depression. When the mother has these health conditions during pregnancy, then the baby’s health and safety are at risk. Infants born to adolescent mothers are often premature or have low birth weight (Kassa et al., 2018). These two conditions increase the baby’s risk of having other health issues such as intraventricular hemorrhage and respiratory distress syndrome. Society also spends a significant number of resources in supporting these families. Another concern for adolescent mothers is that they are likely to quit school or become incarcerated.
The precursors of adolescent pregnancy include education and socioeconomic status. The level of education influences many happenings in one’s life. Most of the teenagers come from families who are less educated. Furthermore, most of them have low socioeconomic status (Nguyen et al., 2019). Resources for helping teenage mothers include the national campaign and the mothers’ nature. Both are devoted to ensuring young mothers receive the best quality care possible. The rate of adolescent pregnancy has increased by 8% in Florida due to the teenagers’ awareness of safe sex.
Kassa, G. M., Arowojolu, A. O., Odukogbe, A. A., & Yalew, A. W. (2018). Prevalence and determinants of adolescent pregnancy in Africa: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Reproductive health, 15(1), 1-17.
Health Assessment during the Adolescent and Prenatal Periods-Sample Solution
Pregnant adolescents and their unborn babies are prone to health risks like preeclampsia and cerebral palsy. Charlton et al. (2018) observe that the risk factors for adolescent pregnancy include drug use, engaging or being a victim of sexual abuse, low self-esteem, and limited knowledge about sex and contraception. Besides, teens can get pregnant due to social risk factors like peer pressure and engaging in relationships with older people. Family factors such as single parenthood, poor parental supervision, and conflicts between family members also increase the risk of pregnancy.(Adolescent And Prenatal-Periods Essay-Sample)
Community and State Resources
There are various teen resources in North Carolina, such as Teen Talk, funded by Forsyth County (Department of Public Health, 2022). In addition, the pregnancy prevention program offers community-based education and workshops to reduce unintended teen pregnancies. It targets teenage women aged 9-13 and addresses pregnancy-related issues, such as sexuality, abstinence, decision-making, peer pressure, and relationships. The School Social Workers Initiative in Winston, Salem is also a state resource targeting adolescent pregnancy (WSFCS, 2022). The initiative consists of social workers moving across the community and families to support adolescent students in overcoming barriers like teen pregnancy and substance abuse. They also offer parenting needs like advice to pregnant teenagers.(Adolescent And Prenatal-Periods Essay-Sample)
Teen Pregnancy Rates
Teen pregnancy rates have reduced significantly in North Carolina across the past decade. For instance, in 2020, there were 7800 teenage pregnancies among women aged 19 and below (National Center for Health Statistics, 2022). The figure was a reduction from the 2010 census report, which identified 16000 pregnancies. In addition, 106 girls aged 11-14 got pregnant in 2020, and 61 were among those between 12-14. Consequently, the state recorded 17.3% teen pregnancies in every 1000 teens aged 15-17 in 2020 compared to 37.9% in 2010. Similarly, the rates declined in Forsyth, with the county recording 24.5% pregnancies in every 1000 girls aged 15-19 in 2018 compared to 33.1% in 2011.(Adolescent And Prenatal-Periods Essay-Sample)
Charlton, B. M., Roberts, A. L., Rosario, M., Katz-Wise, S. L., Calzo, J. P., Spiegelman, D., & Austin, S. B. (2018). Teen pregnancy risk factors among young women of diverse sexual orientations. Pediatrics, 141(4). https://doi.org/10.1542/peds.2017-2278
Department of Public Health. (2022). Teen Talk. Forsyth County. https://www.co.forsyth.nc.us/publichealth/teen_talk.aspx
National Center for Health Statistics (2022, 25 February). Teen Birth Rate by State. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/pressroom/sosmap/teen-births/teenbirths.htm
WSFCS (2022). School Social Workers. Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools. https://www.wsfcs.k12.nc.us/domain/51