Pregnancy adds challenge for teens treated for drug abuse, report says

May 9, 2013
Pregnancy adds challenge for teens treated for drug abuse, report says
Substance-abuse programs may improve young women's education, income prospects.

(HealthDay)—Half of pregnant teens in substance-abuse treatment programs used alcohol or drugs in the month before they entered treatment. And nearly 20 percent used drugs or alcohol on a daily basis during that month, according to a U.S. government report.

Among females aged 12 to 19 who weren't pregnant entering treatment, those rates were about 71 percent and 24 percent, respectively, the study from the U.S. Substance Abuse and Administration (SAMHSA) found.

The most commonly used substance among female teens in these treatment programs was marijuana (73 percent of and 70 percent of other girls). But pregnant teens were twice as likely to use and than other female teens—about 17 percent versus 8 percent—the investigators noted.

Pregnant teens account for about 4 percent of the 57,000 girls aged 12 to 19 admitted to substance-abuse treatment programs each year, according to the report. But because of their pregnancy, these girls face greater challenges in many important areas, including income and education.

The SAMHSA researchers reported that among the girls in the substance-abuse treatment programs, pregnant teens were three times more likely than other teen girls to rely on public assistance as their primary source of income (15 percent versus 5 percent, respectively). In addition, 74 percent of nonpregnant who were not in the workforce were students, compared with only 44 percent of pregnant teens.

"Pregnant teens entering treatment face difficult challenges, but the good news is that treatment is a very positive step in helping them regain their lives and generate new hope for themselves and their children," SAMHSA administrator Pamela Hyde said in an agency news release.

"Treatment programs and communities must work together to meet the specialized needs of pregnant women of all ages, such as referrals to and parenting courses," she said. "Through this effort we can help ensure that these future mothers and their children live healthier, happier and more productive lives."

Explore further: People with mental illness make up large share of US smokers

More information: The American Academy of Pediatrics says that drug-abuse prevention starts with parents.

Related Stories

People with mental illness make up large share of US smokers

March 20, 2013
(HealthDay)—Adults with a mental illness or a substance-abuse disorder represent about 25 percent of the U.S. population but account for nearly 40 percent of all cigarettes smoked in the country, according to a new study.

Drug, alcohol abuse more likely among high school dropouts

February 20, 2013
(HealthDay News) —The link between poor academic performance and substance abuse just got stronger, with a new U.S. government report showing ties between the two.

Depression triples between ages 12 and 15 in girls in U.S.

July 31, 2012
(HealthDay) -- An average of 12.0 percent of girls aged 12 to 17 years have experienced a major depressive episode (MDE) in the past year, with the rates tripling for girls between the ages of 12 and 15, according to a report ...

Many women still smoke during pregnancy

May 10, 2012
(HealthDay) -- Too many American women still smoke during their pregnancies, a new report finds, and rates of such smoking vary widely depending on race.

Repeat births by teen girls still too high: CDC

April 2, 2013
(HealthDay)—Nearly 20 percent of American teens who give birth have already had one or more babies, a federal study released Tuesday says.

Recommended for you

Small drop in measles vaccinations would have outsized effect, study estimates

July 24, 2017
Small reductions in childhood measles vaccinations in the United States would produce disproportionately large increases in the number of measles cases and in related public health costs, according to a new study by researchers ...

At the cellular level, a child's loss of a father is associated with increased stress

July 18, 2017
The absence of a father—due to incarceration, death, separation or divorce—has adverse physical and behavioral consequences for a growing child. But little is known about the biological processes that underlie this link ...

New comparison chart sheds light on babies' tears

July 10, 2017
A chart that enables parents and clinicians to calculate if a baby is crying more than it should in the first three months of its life has been created by a Kingston University London researcher, following a study of colic ...

Blood of SIDS infants contains high levels of serotonin

July 3, 2017
Blood samples from infants who died of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) had high levels of serotonin, a chemical that carries signals along and between nerves, according to a study funded in part by the National Institutes ...

Is your child's 'penicillin allergy' real?

July 3, 2017
(HealthDay)—Many children suspected of being allergic to the inexpensive, first-line antibiotic penicillin actually aren't, new research indicates.

Probiotic supplements failed to prevent babies' infections

July 3, 2017
(HealthDay)—Probiotic supplements may not protect babies from catching colds or stomach bugs in day care, a new clinical trial suggests.

0 comments

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.