Birth Rate among Teen Mothers Dropped in 2010
The teen birth rate among U.S. girls has dropped by 9% during 2010, bringing it to the lowest level ever recorded. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released this data as part of their program for the National Center for Health Statistics. This was the biggest decline in a one year time span since 1946. While other social problems have risen and fallen each year, teen pregnancy has been dropping steadily for over a decade. The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy has been tracking these figures and noted that the birth rate among teen girls dropped a total of 44% between 1991 and 2010.
The decline in teen births has covered all states, including those with higher populations of low income families where teen pregnancy is a greater risk. Youth health organizations used to view teen pregnancy as an unavoidable problem, but these results clearly show that proper education and care can have a serious effect on pregnancy rates among adolescents that are ill-prepared to deal with raising children. The dropping birth rate can be directly traced to a combination of contraception usage and more careful sexual practices among teens. States with abstinence-only education policies did not see the same drastic drops as states with more comprehensive programs.
Media coverage of the challenges of teen pregnancy have also helped teens make better decisions about their bodies. Births from teens under 17 dropped by 12% last year, bringing the total drop from 1991 to 55%. Pregnancy dropped among all racial groups, with Pacific Islander teens improving the most at 13% less births. The current birth rate is roughly 34 births per 1000 teen girls. The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy will be continuing to work at the state and local level to help bring this number down to zero within the next 25 years.