Adolescent pregnancy involves a teenager getting pregnant who is aged between 15 and19 years old. This stage also known as the puberty sage is the stage where a girl is able to conceive (Jarvis, 2016). Due to the circumstances associated with adolescent pregnancy, there are serious health risks attributed to this situation to the teenage girl, the baby, and the surrounding community. There are various risk factors to adolescent pregnancy which if properly addressed may reduce the negative effects associated with adolescent pregnancy (Jarvis, 2016). The risk factors to adolescent pregnancy are categorized into three groups, which include individual risk factors, social risk factors, and family risk factors. Individual risk factors are factors, which the teens engage in and are solely responsible for exposing themselves to these risks (Jarvis, 2016).
These include indulgence in drug and alcohol use, which may negatively affect their decision-making process, lack of good planning for the future, and lack of knowledge on matters surrounding sex and contraception (Loaiza, Liang, & United Nations Population Fund, 2013). These risk factors may result in the teens engaging in risky sexual activities, which may lead to adolescent pregnancy. Social risk factors involve the social aspects surrounding the teenagers, which include social grouping and associations (Jarvis, 2016). These factors include peer pressure from other peers to engage in risky sexual activities and negative social relationships, which pressure peers to engage in negative behaviors. Family risk factors are factors that are associated with the family. The family is the closest relationship any person can have and has an influence on the behavior of individuals (Jarvis, 2016).
Some of the family risk factors include poor parenting, which may lead to children making poor decisions, poor communication between parents and their children, conflict between family members, and a family history of teenage pregnancies (Loaiza, Liang, & United Nations Population Fund, 2013). There are community and state resources devoted in addressing adolescent pregnancy in Tifton community, which is in Georgia State. This includes programs aimed at helping pregnant teens in raising their children, which are provided through the Department of Health, Division of Family, and Child Services (Guttmacher, 2018).
The Tifton community has also integrated technology to help teen mothers in completing their education without having to go back to school (Guttmacher, 2018). Teen pregnancy rates for the last 10 years for Georgia State have been declining due to behavior change, abortions, and miscarriages (Guttmacher, 2018). The adolescent pregnancy rate was 57 per 1,000 women between the age of 15 and 19 years in 2007. The rate has been decreasing over the years to the rate of 47 per 1,000 women in 2017 (Guttmacher, 2018). This rate has been reduced through the implementation of publicly supported family planning centers in Georgia, which aim at providing contraceptives to female clients across Georgia State (Guttmacher, 2018).
Guttmacher. (2018). State Facts about Unintended Pregnancy: Georgia. Retrieved from https://www.guttmacher.org/fact-sheet/state-facts-about-unintended-pregnancy-georgia
Jarvis, C. (2016). Physical examination & health assessment. St. Louis, Missouri: Elsevier.
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Loaiza, E., Liang, M., & United Nations Population Fund,. (2013). Adolescent pregnancy: A review of the evidence. New York: UNFPA.