Good ways of showing support to a pregnant teenager are to educate, listen, and help in any way possible.
According to PregnantTeenHelp.org, around 750,000 teenagers will get pregnant this year. Breaking this down further, it comes out to about one-third of all girls in the United States will get pregnant while they are a teenager. Additionally, more than two-thirds of these teenagers will not graduate from high school.
The bright side – the teen birth rate has dropped about one-third since the early ’90s.
Better but still surprising! The effect that teen births can have on an individual are a cause for concern. Whether it is because of the lack of education on the subject or wanting to hide the pregnancy, teenagers are at greater risk of having little to no prenatal care, which could be harmful both to the mother-to-be and the child. A lack of prenatal care is a great cause for concern considering that teenage mothers also have a higher risk of premature births and lower birth weights. Both of these consequences can lead to greater short-term and long-term health problems for both the mother and child.
Shedding a light on teen pregnancy is important. It is comforting to know that teen pregnancies are declining. But when teen pregnancies do occur, support should be first on the list. Reminding girls of the importance of prenatal care, offering help in any way, and just talking with a pregnant teen can make a WORLD of difference.
HealthNet’s Better Indy Babies (BIBs) and Healthy Families (HF) programs help at-risk and young families by offering a support team. This team includes social workers, registered nurses and community health workers, and they provide prenatal health education, support and linkage to community resources.