Intervention Reduces Pregnancy Risk In Teen GirlsMain Category: Sexual Health / STDs
Also Included In: Pediatrics / Children's Health
Article Date: 26 Feb 2013
Teen girls at increased risk of pregnancy reported more regular use of condoms, oral contraception, or both after participating in a youth development intervention.
The finding came from a randomized controlled trial published Online First by JAMA Pediatrics.
Among the industrialized countries, the highest rates of teen pregnancy and childbearing continue to be registered in the U.S.
Every year, over 750,000 young females between 15 and 19 years old become pregnant, which results in the birth of over 400,000 babies.
According to research presented last year at the American Public Health Association's 140th Annual Meeting, low literacy rates in pre-teen girls significantly predict child-bearing among adolescents in the U.S.
Sexual risk behaviors and outcomes were observed by Renee E. Sieving, R.N., Ph.D., F.S.A.H.M., of the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, and colleagues with a 2-year follow-up questionnaire, half a year after the Prime Time youth development intervention was completed.
Prime Time is an intervention for girls who are at increased risk of getting pregnant; it is designed for primary care medical centers.
The main goal was to encourage change in certain psychosocial attributes associated with sexual risk behaviors and other behavioral outcomes by teaming up with case managers and intervention components, including youth leadership.
The 24-month survey was completed by 236 (93.3%) of the 253 sexually active girls between 13 and 17 years of age who met the specified risk criteria.
In the trial, 127 females were put into the control group and 126 were assigned to the intervention.
The authors explained:
"Findings suggest that health services grounded in a youth development framework can lead to long-term reductions in sexual risk among vulnerable youth."
After analyzing the data that was collected by the self-report surveys, the researchers discovered that at the 24-month follow-up, compared to the control group, the girls in the intervention group reported "significantly more consistent" use of:
Additionally, they reported reductions in the perceived significance of having sex.
The researchers concluded:
"Together with previous findings demonstrating reductions in sexual risk behaviors, relational aggression and violence victimization among Prime Time participants, results from this study suggest that involvement in a youth development intervention that combines individualized case management and youth leadership components holds great promise for preventing multiple risk behaviors among youth most vulnerable to poor health outcomes, including early pregnancy."
Written by Sarah Glynn
Copyright: MediLexicon International Ltd
Original article posted on Medical News Today.
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