Prevention of Teenage Pregnancy

The following measures are helpful in preventing teenage pregnancies:

  • Education on Teen Pregnancy: Teens must be educated about the realities of becoming a mother and the responsibilities and challenges of raising a child. The media often glamorizes parenthood and this may lead to an unrealistic perception about pregnancy and parenthood. Parents and teachers must help teens understand that having a baby is a life changing event and not something that can be taken lightly.
  • Education on Preventing Pregnancy: Abstaining from sexual relations is the only fully effective way to practice birth control. Teens must be taught abstinence. Parents and teachers should also teach them about birth control methods in case they choose to be sexually active. It is the responsibility of the parents to educate teens about the importance of waiting to have sexual relations until they are more mature.
  • Importance of Parental Involvement: Teen pregnancies often occur in those teenagers who do not enjoy a close relationship with their parents. Parents need to be involved in their children’s lives and should also attempt to get to know their friends. Keeping the lines of communication open can help greatly in preventing teenage pregnancies.
  • Reducing the health risks of teen pregnancy

Teenagers who are pregnant can ensure a healthy pregnancy in the following ways:

  • Receive Early Prenatal Care: It is important to inform your doctor as soon as you suspect you may be pregnant. Or you can also talk to your school counselor or nurse. They may be able to direct you to a low-cost clinic.
  • Refrain from Alcohol Intake, Drug Use and Smoking: Alcohol, cigarettes and drugs can severely harm the developing baby. If you are finding it difficult to quit on your own, seek help from a family member, teacher or counselor.
  • Take Prenatal Vitamins: Pregnant women need to take about 0.4mg of folic acid daily to prevent birth defects in the baby.
  • Seek Emotional Support: Becoming pregnant is physically and emotionally challenging especially for teens. Therefore it is important to reach out to your family, friends and others whom you can trust. Having practical and emotional support will help greatly throughout the pregnancy.