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Teen Health 411
Teen Health 411

Teenage Birth Rate Increased in 2006

Well now there is something President Bush can take credit for - the teenage live birth rate increased by 3% in 2006, the first increase since 1991, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

We do not know if this is the start of a trend back up to the high of 61.8 live births per 1,000 females of 1991, but it sure is not a good sign, and can be added to the long list of evidence that abstinence-only education is not working for teens. We already know that abstinence-only education and not teaching teens about birth control leads to higher birth rates and sexually transmitted infection, and yet, the federal government continues to support it.

The other option is to teach comprehensive sexuality education which leads to delayed onset of sexual activity, higher rates of birth control use, higher rates of condom use, and fewer cases of sexually transmitted infection. Gee, it does not seem like a tough decision to me, but I guess that is why I am not the president.

Photo credit: ewedistrict
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About the Author

Dr. Brown is a developmental psychologist specializing in adolescent health.