Teenage pregnancy is a very serious issue in modern society and a rich topic for essay writing. An unexpected pregnancy can be immensely difficult for a young couple to raise on their own, and can easily prevent young men and women from achieving their life goals due to the responsibilities thrust upon them. As such, preventing teenage pregnancy is an important part of ensuring the overall health of the youth population. This is a sample essay that focuses on teenage pregnancy prevention tactics.
Preventing teenage pregnancy
The primary prevention method that should be utilized to prevent teenage pregnancy is the use of condoms which can be promoted through the use of sexual education. Studies have found that sexual education is the most effective method to reduce rates of teenage pregnancy, though these methods can be controversial and many parents would rather opt for abstinence only methods. Abstinence alone, however, has not proven to be effective,
“Adolescents who received comprehensive sex education were significantly less likely to report teen pregnancy than those who received no formal sex education, whereas there was no significant effect of abstinence-only education”. (Kohler, 2008)”.
As it is ultimately a parent’s decision to teach sexual education to their child, a nurse’s role is to help a parent make an educated decision for their teenagers sexual health, and have a keen understanding of the sexual behaviors of teenagers and young adults. If prevention methods are unsuccessful and a teenager becomes pregnant, a nurse can be vital in assisting the teenager throughout her pregnancy by developing a nursing diagnosis and treatment plan to ensure a healthy pregnancy.
A teenager can face multiple challenges during a pregnancy that can include health concerns, family problems, judgment from peers and psychological issues. A correct nursing diagnosis is crucial in the development of an effective nursing treatment plan. A role performance disturbance (Gordon, 2010) can occur in most teenagers as they are still seen as children however they must take on adult responsibilities of giving birth to and taking care of a child.
A discharge outcome for the teenager with role performance disturbances would include being able to adapt to the change in role for the teenager. The best outcome would also prepare the teenager for the arrival of the baby. The nursing intervention could include discussing with the teenager techniques to be able to adapt to the role change as well as discussion on how the teenager is coping with the role change.
Teenagers are faced many times with the question of readiness to have sex from their peers, society and ultimately themselves. These questions can be detrimental to the sexual health of the teenager as a lot of the focus is on when the teenager is ready not on if the teenager should be engaging in sexual activity.
“I argue that this “discourse of readiness” poses serious threats to teens’ identity development, sexual decision making, and educators efforts to help them through these processes” (Ashcraft, 2006).
Rather than a discussion of readiness to have sex, the focus should be on a readiness for learning about teenage sexuality and pregnancy. As teenagers are still developing their brains and decision making skills it is essential to teach teenagers about their growing hormones and sexual activity. Studies have found that programs which teach sexual education increase the rates of condom use which subsequently reduce teenage pregnancy.
“Safer Choices had its greatest effect on measures involving condom use. The program reduced the frequency of intercourse without a condom during the three months prior to the survey…increased use of condoms and other protection against pregnancy at last intercourse” (Coyle, 2001).
As teenagers are increasingly likely to engage in sexual activity it is important that they are safe, utilizing effective contraception methods, and learning about sexual health through channels like this expository essay. By decreasing rate of teenage sexuality we can increase the health of the teenage population both physically and psychologically.
Ashcraft, C. (2006). Ready or not…? Teen sexuality and the troubling discourse of readiness.
Anthropology & education quarterly, 37(4), 328-346.
Coyle, K., Basen-Engquist, K., Kirby, D., Parcel, G., Banspach, S., Collins, J., … & Harrist, R.
(2001). Safer choices: reducing teen pregnancy, HIV, and STDs. Public Health Reports, 116(Suppl 1), 82.
Gordon, M. (2010). Manual of nursing diagnosis. Jones & Bartlett Learning.
Kohler, P. K., Manhart, L. E., & Lafferty, W. E. (2008). Abstinence-only and comprehensive sex education and the initiation of sexual activity and teen pregnancy.
Journal of Adolescent Health, 42(4), 344-351.