Teen Pregnancy Effects On The United States

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Introduction Adolescent pregnancy is a widely researched and debated topic in psychology. Teen pregnancy rates in the United States have dropped significantly over the last two decades from 6.2% in 1990 to 2.7% in 2013, a 56% decrease, for women aged 15-19. Despite the sharp decline, concerns about the consequences of adolescent childbearing have not decreased. While evidence suggests that giving birth as a teenager is often associated with economic hardships, numerous researchers argue that these hardships were in place before the pregnancy and that the birth of the baby itself does not have a significant negative impact on the socioeconomic status (SES) on the adolescent mother. While women who give birth as teenagers are more likely…show more content…
This paper investigates this claim by discussing the influence of adolescent childbearing on socioeconomic outcomes, such as educational attainment and receipt of government assistance, and on government sponsored health services. Impact on Educational Attainment An important factor that determines whether or not mothers who gave birth as teenagers are a burden on the economy is their socioeconomic status. While it is true that a high percentage of teen mothers are of low SES and therefore receive more public assistance, evidence suggests that the early pregnancy itself is not the cause. Educational attainment is one of the determining factors of socioeconomic status and thus its relationship to teen pregnancy will be investigated, followed by a discussion on the impact of early childbearing on household incomes and receiving welfare. Researchers have found a wide range of outcomes in terms of schooling as a result of giving birth as a teenagers. While some scholars argue that adolescent pregnancies have a significant negative impact on education, at times even reporting that teen mothers receive up to three years of less schooling than their childless counterparts, an overwhelming amount of evidence suggests that early childbearing has no substantial impact on educational attainment, negative effects being minimal and often
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