During our teenaged years we make a lot of major decisions about our lives and take on a lot of new responsibilities. When it comes to sex, these decisions can have serious consequences like sexually transmitted diseases or HIV, sexual coercion and pressure, or unwanted pregnancy. With such serious consequences, you may want to help your teen by sharing information on the contraceptive options outlined on this site and information on safe sexual practices.
The following are a few quick facts concerning teenage pregnancy trends in Canada covering the period from 1974 to 1998:
- There is a lower rate of teenage pregnancies now then in 1974. The rate in 1997 was 43 pregnancies per 1,000 women aged 15 to 19. (Statistics Canada and Canadian Council on Social Development)
- The U.S. rate is more than double the Canadian rate. (National Campaign to Prevent Teenage Pregnancy)
- Just over half of teen pregnancies in Canada resulted in live births in 1994, compared to about two-thirds in 1974. Less than 20% of teenage women who gave birth in 1994 were married, compared to 75% in 1974. (Statistics Canada)
- Although data on teen pregnancy and social and economic status are limited in Canada, there is evidence that many American teens who become parents are already economically and educationally disadvantaged before having children. (Alan Guttmacher Institute)
- Teens’ decisions regarding sexual activity and pregnancy are influenced not only by family, schools, and the media, but also by peers - in both negative and positive ways. (National Campaign to Prevent Teenage Pregnancy)
- International comparisons indicate that the following factors contribute to lower teen pregnancy rates: open access to contraceptives, frank discussions of sexuality in the media, and sex education and other education programs in which parents and teens actively participate.