A new CDC report reveals that while teen sex levels have dropped in the past 25 years, the percentage of teen girls using the morning after pill is on the rise.
The CDC survey looked at sexual activity, childbearing and contraceptive use, as well as risky behaviors in teens from 2011 to 2013. In addition, the National Survey of Family Growth brought new insight based on survey results from 1988 to 2013.
As such, the report found that 1 out of 5 teenage girls (aged 15 to 19) who are sexually active have taken the morning-after pill. The numbers show an increase throughout the past decade. Possibly, the underpinning factor of more teen girls using the morning-after pill is that is has become increasingly easier to purchase it, even without a medical prescription.
Ten years ago, as stricter regulations were in place, the morning-after pill was only used by 1 out of 12 teen girls.
The levels of use of other birth control means have remained steadily the same in the same period. Condoms still top the list of preferences, being accessible and not too expensive to purchase. Nonetheless, while almost all the teen girls reported having used a condom during intercourse, almost half also reported using contraceptive pills.
And while the numbers of teen girls using the morning-after pill increased, and the number of teens using birth-control methods remained steady, the number of teens who do engage in sexual activity fell from 1988 to 2013. Possibly due to greater awareness regarding STDS, including HIV/AIDS and greater efforts to improve sex education, these numbers have been dwindling.
While in 1988, 60 percent of teen boys were engaging in sexual activity and 51 percent of girls, in approximately 2005 the percentages almost froze at 45 percent for both teen boys and teen girls. From 2011 to 2013, the percentages changed only slightly, with 44 percent teen girls and 47 percent teen boys engaging in sexual activity.
According to the report, 15-year old teenagers are the least likely to engage in sexual intercourse, with only 15 percent reporting they had sex at least once.
In 2013, the teen birth rate was calculated at 27 out of 1,000. In 1957, the same rate had reached a historic level: 96 teen births per 1,000 teens surveyed.
The report’s findings coincide with previous reports that announced the decline in teen births, possibly underpinned by less sexual activity and better birth control options, as well as greater awareness on sexual activity, STDs and other risks of sexual activity.
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