Teenage pregnancy is not a racial issue

February 7, 2012, SAGE Publications

While researchers have long set to determine if there is a tie between race and teenage pregnancy, according to a new study, equating black teenagers with the problem of teenage pregnancy is a misrepresentation of today's real­ity. This new study is detailed in the article, "Black Teenage Pregnancy: A Dynamic Social Problem," published in SAGE Open.

Researchers Lorette I. Winters and Paul C. Winters studied data from 1,580 teenage girls and found that while black teens are about twice as likely as white teens to ever be pregnant, pregnancy rates for black minors are in reality declining while rates for minor whites, although sporadic, have increased and from 2005-2006 and even exceeded those of poor minor blacks.

"Apparently, teen pregnancy is becoming more of a problem for affluent and poor white minors of late compared with their black counterparts as reflected in their recent rates," wrote the authors.

Researchers also analyzed the relationship between the economy, race, and teenage pregnancy and found that poor economic conditions are a true marker of disparity between black and white pregnant teens. For example, in 2003-2004, when unemploy­ment rates were high, black were seven times more likely to have ever been pregnant than white teenagers. Conversely, in better economies, when unemployment rates are low, there is almost no difference between reported teenage pregnancies for black and white teenagers.

The authors wrote, "In good economies when there are greater job opportunities, black teens may choose education, work, or career over motherhood."

Winters and Winters utilized data gathered from 1999 to 2006 by the National Center for Health Statistics of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. This data was taken from in-home interviews as well as standardized physical examinations and laboratory studies of 1,580 black and white females ages 15 to 19.

The study reported other noteworthy information about such as the fact that the pregnancy rate was found to be significantly higher for teens living in households with a female head of household compared with those with a male head of household and that the over­all pregnancy rate has been dropping since 2000 with the exception of a slight increase in 2005-2006. Additionally, the researchers found that teenagers and teenagers from lower-income homes have a greater likelihood of reporting having ever been pregnant than teenagers or teenagers who come from higher-income homes.

Explore further: 80 percent of US boys use condoms the first time

More information: The article "Black Teenage Pregnancy: A Dynamic Social Problem" published in SAGE Open, is available free at: sgo.sagepub.com/content/early/ … 436563.full.pdf+html

Related Stories

80 percent of US boys use condoms the first time

October 12, 2011
A surprising 80 percent of teenage boys say they are using condoms the first time they have sex, a government survey found in a powerful sign that decades of efforts to change young people's sexual behavior are taking hold.

CDC: Many teen moms didn't think it could happen

January 19, 2012
A new government study suggests a lot of teenage girls are clueless about their chances of getting pregnant.

Recommended for you

Sleep better, lose weight?

January 17, 2018
(HealthDay)—Sleeplessness could cost you when it's time to stand on your bathroom scale, a new British study suggests.

Who uses phone apps to track sleep habits? Mostly the healthy and wealthy in US

January 16, 2018
The profile of most Americans who use popular mobile phone apps that track sleep habits is that they are relatively affluent, claim to eat well, and say they are in good health, even if some of them tend to smoke.

Improvements in mortality rates are slowed by rise in obesity in the United States

January 15, 2018
With countless medical advances and efforts to curb smoking, one might expect that life expectancy in the United States would improve. Yet according to recent studies, there's been a reduction in the rate of improvement in ...

Teens likely to crave junk food after watching TV ads

January 15, 2018
Teenagers who watch more than three hours of commercial TV a day are more likely to eat hundreds of extra junk food snacks, according to a report by Cancer Research UK.

Can muesli help against arthritis?

January 15, 2018
It is well known that healthy eating increases a general sense of wellbeing. Researchers at Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU) have now discovered that a fibre-rich diet can have a positive influence ...

Your dishwasher is not as sterile as you think

January 13, 2018
(HealthDay)—Your dishwasher may get those plates spotless, but it is also probably teeming with bacteria and fungus, a new study suggests.

2 comments

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Skepticus
not rated yet Feb 07, 2012
In other words, teens of any race are equally affected by raging hormones and equally eager for a chance to roll in the hay, pregnancies be damned, it feels too good not to!
Vendicar_Decarian
not rated yet Feb 07, 2012
It is most certainly a racial issue if you are a TeaPublican.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.